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Wanted: A Very Personal Assistant, Episode 2

July 31, 2015

BBC Three, 9pm:

There are currently around 300,000 young disabled people in the UK who rely on carers for their daily needs. For many of these ambitious young people, finding the right carer is the difference between achieving their ambitions or a life unfulfilled. But as a young disabled person in Britain your options are limited, as the majority of people working in care are over 40 years old.

But with three quarters of a million young people under 24 currently looking for work, could the solution being staring us in the face?

This groundbreaking series explores what happens when four young ambitious disabled people put all their care needs in the hands of unemployed people their own age. But there’s a catch – to ensure applicants come with an open mind, the exact nature of the job and the employer’s disabilities aren’t revealed until the final job interview.

Will seeing the world from a different point of view help break down preconceptions of disability and unemployment? Could challenging shared experiences lead to lasting friendships and even a rewarding new career?

In the final programme, the new carers are pushed further out of their comfort zones as they help their employers face real-world challenges away from the home. With the possibility of a real job offer at the end there’s a lot at stake for everyone.

Michael’s carer Denny Lee struggles with his bowel management come to a head, forcing her to question whether this is really the job for her. Josh’s carer Francesca is shocked to be asked to take him to the red light district in Amsterdam so he can have sex. Rupy’s carer Chantelle comes to terms with the stark realities of finding accessible homes. Jasmine’s carer Emily must prove herself on the domestic front to have any chance of being offered a job.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 31, 2015 7:49 am

    it should be careworkers not carers, as carers are not paid whereas careworkers are.

    • Rudi Breakwell-Bos permalink
      August 3, 2015 2:50 pm

      As someone who pays people so I can live independently (since 1971), I prefer to use the same appellation as the programme, i.e. “Personal Assistant” or “PA”.

      In my view, and this is a discussion that has been going on since at least the early 80s, the word “care” is better associated with a parent, spouse, partner, etc or anyone who has an intimate, emotional connection with the person receiving assistance. The title “personal assistant” or “PA” denotes a more professional working relationship involving remuneration for services.

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