Mears/ILS creates 20 care jobs in West Lothian Number of people in West Lothian aged over 75 set to increase by 140% by 2037 With care at home services growing in demand across the region, Independent Living Services (ILS, part of Mears Group) is embarking on a new recruitment drive as part of its continued expansion in West Lothian, with up to 20 care worker positions available over the next couple of months.ILS provides vitally important services on contract to West Lothian Council, to support older people at home and people of all ages who require support to live as independently as possible. With the number of people in West Lothian aged over 75 set to increase by 140 per cent by 2037*, higher than any other region in Scotland, care at home services are becoming more vital than ever before.The company is looking for a range of full-time, part-time and relief support workers across the region, particularly in Livingston, Bathgate, Broxburn and Armadale. Although previous experience is welcomed, it’s not necessary as the company provides a full training programme in addition to ongoing support with the opportunity for career progression.Mary Shields, Service Manager for ILS West Lothian, says: “The increasing number of people requiring support means that demand for home care services is growing at an extraordinary rate, with more and more families in West Lothian realising that this is a viable and affordable alternative to residential care, or nursing homes.“A little bit of help can go a long way towards maintaining an independent lifestyle, and this is exactly where we fit in. Our employees support people with some of the everyday tasks we all take for granted, such as bathing, domestic chores and cooking meals.“Many of our support workers have made a real career for themselves at ILS, and gain enormous job satisfaction from making a difference to people’s lives.”Support workers range widely in age, from 18 over 65, and come from all walks of life. ILS offers flexible working patterns which make work in this sector attractive to many different types of individuals, including those looking for a total career change, people thinking of returning to work, the older generation, or younger people starting out on their working life. Care and support is generally provided on a one-to-one basis, and those who work with ILS derive great job satisfaction which comes from a genuine interest in working with people.Although previous experience is welcomed, it’s not necessary as the company provides a full training programme in addition to ongoing support with the opportunity for career progression. An SVQ training programme supports employees’ development and individuals can fit work patterns around their own availability. A mix of driving and walking positions are available.As well as providing services on contract to the local authority, ILS also provides a private service to those who wish to augment the care they receive through the council, or have other requirements for support.Anyone interested in working for ILS in West Lothian can get in touch by calling 0131 334 2356. ILS is part of the Mears Group, one of the UKs leading providers of home care and support services.Local case study – “Now I can’t imagine doing anything else” Nan Henery, 59, lives in Bathgate and joined ILS as a support worker in January 2014. Having dipped in and out of the care sector over the years, including a stint in a care home, she knew that this type of employment was for her, but wanted to be out in the community and have one-to-one contact with people. Nan knew that ILS was looking for staff in the area, and she hasn’t looked back. She works with clients in Bathgate, Whitburn, Armadale, Boghall and Fauldhouse.“I’ve built up a real rapport with my clients, and they put a lot of trust in me,” says Nan. “Helping them to have a better quality of life is fantastic and seeing the smiles on their faces when I visit lets me know that I’m doing a good job. I also love the fact that this job is very varied – I work with people aged from 37 to 92, so every house is different and everyone’s needs are different.“Although I provide support for simple everyday tasks such as meal preparation and personal care, companionship is massively important, especially as I might be the only person my clients see in a day. Many of them can’t get out and about so I like to bring the outside world into them, and keep them updated with local news. Sometimes it’s the little things like this which really matter.“I might be a little bit older than some of my colleagues, but I feel that my life experience lends itself extremely well to this job and now I can’t imagine doing anything else. I would certainly recommend it to anyone who has a caring nature and wants to help people. And although I had previous experience, this isn’t necessary as the company provides excellent training.”*Source: National Records of Scotland. The number of people aged over 75 is set to increase by 140% in West Lothian by 2037, which is higher than the national figure of 86% and higher than any other region in Scotland.