Welfare, Recreation and Community Arts Workers design and implement strategies and programs to meet community and individual needs and assist individuals, families and groups with social, emotional and financial difficulties to improve quality of life by educating and supporting them and working towards change in their social environment.

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually required. Around three in five workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to a qualification.

Tasks

  • researching and analysing community issues, needs and problems
  • developing, evaluating and maintaining community resources and programs
  • evaluating data and writing reports such as submissions requesting funding for continuing programs and new projects
  • identifying issues of local need, concerns and aspirations through community consultation
  • organising local sporting, cultural and recreational events and activities such as community functions, hobby classes, community arts projects and sporting competitions
  • providing support while exploring alternatives with clients who experience difficulties such as marital problems, unemployment, illness and drug abuse
  • assessing risks and providing intensive short-term crisis counselling for victims of domestic violence, child abuse, disasters and other crises
  • assisting to establish and administer neighbourhood houses, community groups, employment training programs and other services

Job Titles

  • Community Arts Worker
  • Recreation Officer or Adviser
  • Welfare Worker, or Welfare Case Worker
  • Community Arts Worker (also called Community Arts Officer or Community Artist)

    Identifies issues of local need, concerns and aspirations through community consultation, and designs and implements strategies to facilitate and encourage community arts projects and happenings, and promote the value of community cultural development.

    Specialisations: Community Cultural Development Officer

  • Recreation Officer or Adviser

    Plans, organises and coordinates recreation facilities and programs through organisations such as local governments, schools, church bodies and youth organisations.

  • Welfare Worker, or Welfare Case Worker

    Assists individuals, families and groups with social, emotional or financial difficulties to improve quality of life, by educating and supporting them and working towards change in their social environment.

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    $1,200 Before Tax
  • Future Growth

    strong
  • Skill Level

    Bachelor Degree or higher
  • Employment Size

    25200
  • Unemployment

    below average
  • Male Share

    28.0%
  • Female Share

    72.0%
  • Full-Time Share

    65.7%

Find Vacancies

This is a large occupation employing 25,200 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has grown strongly.
Strong growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create between 10,001 and 25,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • Welfare, Recreation and Community Arts Workers work in most parts of Australia.
  • They mainly work in: Health Care and Social Assistance; Public Administration and Safety; and Arts and Recreation Services.
  • Full-time work is fairly common. Full-time workers, on average, work 33.9 hours per week (compared to the all jobs average of 40 hours).
  • Average earnings for full-time workers are around $1,200 per week (similar to the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • The average age is 40 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Around 7 in 10 workers are female.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was below average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearNumber of Workers
200516900
200621700
200720300
200819700
200920600
201023400
201126700
201221000
201320300
201422200
201525200
202029200

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Jobs Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings12001230

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Hours actually worked by people who usually work full-time, and share of employment by full-time and part-time status, for this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersAll Jobs Average
Full-time65.768.4
Part-time34.331.6
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)33.940

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Health Care and Social Assistance58.5
Public Administration and Safety29.6
Arts and Recreation Services4.3
Other Services3.8
Other Industries3.8

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersAll Jobs Average
NSW38.831.8
VIC19.125.5
QLD19.519.8
SA7.66.8
WA9.511.2
TAS1.92
NT2.51.1
ACT1.21.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-192.7-5.45.4
20-248.6-9.99.9
25-3424.7-23.423.4
35-4424-21.721.7
45-5424.2-21.121.1
55-595.8-8.78.7
60-649.4-5.95.9
65 and Over0.5-3.83.8

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Male and female share of employment in this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males28Males53.6
Females72Females46.4

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationWelfare, Recreation and Community Arts WorkersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate18.7-8.68.6
Bachelor degree41.3-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma15.6-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV17.3-18.918.9
Year 127.1-18.718.7
Years 11 & 100-17.717.7
Below Year 100-8.18.1

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually required.
Around three in five workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to a qualification.

If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Welfare, Recreation and Community Arts Workers who can communicate and are mature and organised.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Psychology

    89% Important

    Human behaviour and performance; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioural and affective disorders.

  2. Customer and Personal Service

    85% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  3. English Language

    84% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  4. Therapy and Counseling

    80% Important

    Diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and career counselling and guidance.

  5. Sociology and Anthropology

    74% Important

    Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.

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Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Getting Information

    87% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  2. Documenting/Recording Information

    86% Important

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  3. Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work

    84% Important

    Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.

  4. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

    82% Important

    Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

  5. Performing for or Working Directly with the Public

    82% Important

    Performing for, or speaking with, the public. This includes speaking on television, serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Occupational Information Network Social and Human Service Assistants Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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