A woman in pink scrubs helping an older woman sitting on a couch

Supportive Care Assistant micro-certificate

Discover a new career. Make a difference in the lives of others.

Georgian College is proud to introduce the Supportive Care Assistant program — supporting labour shortages in the long-term care sector. This is a federally funded program sponsored by College and Institutes Canada (CICan).

About the Supportive Care Assistant program

The Supportive Care Assistant program is a new, fully subsidized micro-certificate developed to address the labour shortages in the long-term care sector. The program allows you to discover a new career, gain work experience, and make a difference in your community.

The micro-certificate includes six weeks of online training and a four-month paid work placement. The program can help accelerate the next step of your career if you choose to pursue further studies and become a fully certified personal support worker (PSW).

Dates and delivery

  • Program type: Micro-certificate
  • Length: Six weeks online training, four-month paid work placement
  • Start dates: Continuous intake commencing July 1
  • Tuition: FREE
  • Locations: All seven of Georgian’s campus communities (Barrie, Orillia, Orangeville, Owen Sound, Midland, Muskoka, South Georgian Bay), North Bay to Ottawa

Why register for the Supportive Care Assistant program?

The Supportive Care Assistant program is fully subsidized and flexible. You don’t have to pay tuition and the online training can be completed on your own schedule.

Build new skills and get practical experience while earning a wage in a growing sector. You’ll also discover a new career while providing much needed support to those working and those living in long-term care.

This program could be right for you if:

  • you have an interest in working with older adults and other people requiring assistance
  • you can communicate effectively and have strong interpersonal skills
  • you are friendly, flexible, and can provide warm encouragement
  • you enjoy working with others and as a member of a team
  • you are trustworthy and honest
  • you are compassionate and have demonstrated empathy, resilience and sensitivity
  • you have an interest in a career in health care

Supportive Care Assistant micro-certificate modules

The six-week online training is divided into learning modules and will prepare you for your role as a supportive care assistant.

Supportive Care Assistant module 1: Professionalism

Professionalism

As a supportive care assistant, it is important to understand your role within the interprofessional team. This module provides the background information and skills needed to provide professional, client-centred assistance.

Supportive Care Assistant module 2: Client and family-centred assistance

Client and Family-centred Assistance

As a supportive care assistant, you will demonstrate respect for the clients and families you work with by providing client- and family-centred supports. This module provides the background information and skills to provide supportive, client-centred care.

Supportive Care Assistant module 3: Communication

Communication

As a supportive care assistant, you will demonstrate inclusive practice skills when interacting with clients, families, and other interprofessional team members. This module provides the background information, skills and effective communication techniques to provide inclusive. client-centred support.

Supportive Care Assistant module 4: Supportive Assistance

Supportive Assistance

In this module, you will learn how to provide personal support as part of your role of supportive care assistant. You will learn how to practise safe and supportive assistance to promote client independence.

Supportive Care Assistant module 5: Infection control and safety

Infection Control and Safety

In this module, you will learn how to demonstrate knowledge of the chain of infection related to disease and transmission. As a supportive care assistant, you need to know how to identify and respond to safety hazards and unsafe situations when dealing with your clients.


Each module will take approximately 20 hours to complete and can be done at your own pace within the six-week training period.

After completing the required modules, you will be connected to an employer who will provide 560 hours of paid employment over a four-month period.

Once you have successfully completed all the requirements, you will be granted the micro-certificate.

Supportive Care Assistant micro-credential

Career opportunities

Your future career as a supportive care assistant

The micro-certificate program includes a four-month work placement in a long-term or home care setting. You will gain experience to help prepare for a career in the sector while providing much needed support to long-term and home care staff. You will assist certified personal support workers (PSWs) and the health-care team to support clients.

Job duties

The role involves performing non-clinical activities which could include:

  • assisting with meals
  • assisting with cleaning and disinfecting
  • stocking materials required by clients and health-care staff
  • making clients’ beds, cleaning their rooms and other areas
  • providing companionship, comfort and support
  • assisting with moving about and accompanying clients as they move about
  • participating in activities with clients

Opportunities to pursue further studies

After receiving your Supportive Care Assistant micro-certificate, you may wish to further your studies to become a fully credentialed personal care provider. If you choose to do so, you may receive recognition for the micro-certificate towards the new training. Please note that you will need to meet the admission requirements for that program.

Georgian programs you may be interested in

  • Personal Support Worker
  • Practical Nursing
    • 2 ½-year diploma program with five clinical placements that prepares you to become a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) in Ontario.
  • Pre-health Sciences Pathway to Advanced Diplomas and Degrees
  • Recreation and Leisure Services

Admission requirements

To be eligible to participate in this program, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age 
  • Must be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or person who has been granted refugee status in Canada; international students are not eligible 
  • Legally entitled to work in Canada according to the relevant provincial legislation and regulations
  • For English first language speakers, you must provide proof of Grade 10 English, or college admission testing may be used as an equivalency
  • For English as a second language speakers, you must provide proof of English language skills (e.g. IELTS 6.0; CLB 6; CEFR B2) or equivalency

Additionally, you should:

  • have regular access to a PC or Mac computer with an internet connection and recent versions of Google Chrome or Internet Explorer installed
  • have basic computer skills
  • have access to transportation for work placement(s)
  • be available to work shifts (e.g. evenings, nights and/or weekends)
  • be physically able to stand and walk with some bending, twisting and lifting

Note: Additional requirements include a vulnerable sector or criminal record check and proof of certain immunizations. You may be exposed to communicable diseases during your work placement.

Don’t meet the admission requirements? Explore upgrading options through Academic and Career Preparation.

Program cost

There is no cost for tuition or to register for the Supportive Care Assistant program.

Bursaries are available for dependent care and transportation during your work placement.

You are expected to cover certain costs associated with the placement including the vulnerable record check or other employment requirements (e.g. appropriate clothing or footwear).

How to apply

We are accepting applications for the Supportive Care Assistant program on an ongoing basis. A limited number of spots are available. Register early to ensure your place. Complete the registration form.

After submitting your application, you can expect to receive an email within one week to determine your start date. You will also receive a package outlining what you need to do in preparation for your work placement.

Once you are approved, you can begin the training. You will have a total of six weeks to complete the modules.

Become an employer partner

If you are an employer in long-term care, you could receive a $5,000 wage subsidy to help train new workers, provide support to staff, and improve quality of care.

Students will assist your staff in the day-to-day activities of your facility, allowing your health-care team to focus on providing care. These students will have the opportunity to learn more about working in the sector and will become a new pool of candidates for filling future staffing needs.

As an employer partner, you will provide students with 560 hours of paid work over the 16-week placement

For more information, review frequently asked questions or connect with us.

Contact us

If you have questions about the Supportive Care Assistant micro-certificate program, connect with our team.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 705.728.1968, ext. 1153
Hours: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

This program is funded in part by Employment and Social Development Canada and is part of CICan’s Building Capacity in Long-term Care project

Funded by the Government of Canada logo with Canadian flag
CICan - Building Capacity in Long-term Care