The Perception of the Care Work and Its Importance: A Pilot Study

Agáta Marková, Lenka Komárková, Zuzana Truhlářová

OBJECTIVES: The article aims to demonstrate how caring is perceived in Czech society and investigates willingness to become a formal or informal caregiver. THEORETICAL BASE: Considering the growing demand for social care as a consequence of the ageing population, the issue of social care personnel has increased in relevance. Occupational prestige could prove to be a way of attracting more people to the field. METHODS: The study is based on questionnaire data (122 respondents) which was analysed using descriptive statistics and regression analysis. OUTCOMES: The findings show that 97% of the respondents admire the work of care staff. This profession is perceived as meaningful although physically and mentally demanding, poorly rated, less attractive and less prestigious. The respondents would rather not do this job and would not recommend it to their children or friends. However, 65% of the respondents would still like to care for their relatives and 52% even perceive this as their duty. SOCIAL WORK IMPLICATIONS: The findings of this study are consistent with the bad reputation of care work concerning the poor financial rating and immense difficulty. Therefore, the social importance and necessity of this work should be communicated, and occupational prestige should be consciously increased to avoid a lack of caregivers.

care staff, occupational prestige, social care, ageing population