South African woman in a scrub suit symbolizing health and welfare careers

Additional information

body or mind

both

Field

Social Services

Boss or Team

Team

Communication

Good Communicator

Work With

People

Math & Science

Neither

Study Length

Prepared to Study for Years

Environment

Busy Environment

Child & Youth Care Worker

If you love working with children and are passionate about their emotional and physical health and wellbeing, then becoming a child and youth care worker could be for you.

It’s an unfortunate part of our society, but many young people suffer abuse, neglect and emotional distress and various aspects of their lives including within their family or at school. Child and youth care workers make an important difference in the lives of these young people by using their specialised skills to help promote a healthy environment and helping them to reach their full potential.

A large part of the job will be assessing the protective, developmental and therapeutic needs of a young person, provide information and act as a mediator.

Required Qualifications

To become a Child & Youth Care Worker in South Africa, you will need a number of qualifications. Entry requirements differ for each of the educational institutions, but typically, you will be expected to have a:

  • Diploma (Diploma in Child and Youth Care Work)
  • Bachelor’s Degree (Bachelor of Technology in Child and Youth Care)
  • Bachelor’s Degree (Bachelor of Social Work)
  • Postgraduate Degree (Master of Technology: Child and Youth Care)

Level of Schooling & School Subjects:

For a Bachelor’s degree or a Diploma, you will need your NSC or NS(v) certificate.

Entry requirements differ, but the following school subjects are recommended:

  • English as a subject is recommended
  • Maths literacy

Length of Study:

Child and Youth Care Workers in South Africa typically study for 1-4 years depending on your choice of qualification and educational institution. However, more specialised career tracks may require up to 10 years of study to qualify for employment.

In a nutshell, the career path can be as follows:

  1. Learner CYCW –  Minimum requirement 10 years of school
  2. Auxilliary CYCW – Further Education and Training Certificate
  3. Child & Health Care worker – Degree
  4. Specialist CYCW – Masters or PhD degrees

Infographic showing the career path to become a Child and Youth Care Worker

 

Employment Opportunities

There are many employment opportunities for Child Care and Youth workers in South Africa. They often work in:

  • Government and NGO’s and non-profit organisations (such as shelters and places of safety)
  • Educational centres
  • Community development programmes
  • Assistant probation officers in courts of law
  • Probation programmes
  • Daycare centres, schools, after-care centres and hostels
  • Children’s homes and treatment centres dealing with substance abuse programmes
  • Mediator or facilitator in communities who are “at-risk”

Do note that you will have to register with the South African Council for Social Service Professions (SACSSP) in order to legally practise professionally as a social worker.

Further Information:

Related University Degrees

Degrees:

IIE MSA, Bachelor of Child and Youth Care:
https://www.iiemsa.co.za/Course/bachelor-of-child-and-youth-care/

Durban University of Technology, Community Health Studies, Child and Youth Care Programme:
https://www.dut.ac.za/faculty/health_sciences/child_and_youth_care/

Related Qualifications and Skills Programs

HW SETA Accredited

FETC: Child and Youth Care Work

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