What does a care or disability support worker do?

An older woman washing dishes with the help of her support worker.

Support workers provide support to people that helps them live their lives more independently. Support can look different from person to person, depending on their individual needs.

In this guide, we’ll explore what aged care and disability support workers do, what skills you need to become one, and how you can join Mable as an Independent Support Worker.

What does a disability support worker do?

NDIS disability support workers play a key role in ensuring people receive the support they need. Their work can make a significant difference to the quality of someone’s life.

NDIS disability support workers may help clients with:

  • Daily personal care to support independent living such as bathing, eating and grooming
  • Achieving work or study goals
  • Transport to enable participation in community, social, economic and daily life activities
  • Household tasks including cooking, cleaning and washing laundry to maintain a client’s home environment
  • Companionship and social support such as learning a new skill or support to be involved in the community.

Specialised services can also be provided by NDIS support workers. These include:

  • Nursing services
  • Speech therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Psychology support services

It is important to note that depending on the type of support you wish to provide, you may or may not need certain qualifications.

Read our guide to support worker duties for more information.

What does an aged care support worker do?

Aged care support workers help older people with everyday living, including cooking and cleaning, and health care. As people age, they may find it more difficult to complete tasks they earlier could. Aged care support workers can assist with these tasks, and in turn help older Australians stay independent and in their own homes for longer.

In-home care for older clients can range from social support (assisting them to participate in the community, accompanying them for a coffee or a movie) to domestic assistance to nursing care.

Roles and responsibilities of workers in aged care:

  • Helping around the home Providing personal care (for example, help with showering and dressing)
  • Assisting with travel and transport
  • Helping with meal preparation
  • Providing in-home nursing
  • Providing palliative care support
  • Providing dementia support
  • Providing overnight support
  • Providing post-hospital support
  • Assisting with community participation
  • Providing respite for carers.

Find out more about what in-home aged care support can look like.

Similarly to providing disability support, the services you offer may or may not require certain qualifications.

What skills do I need to be an aged care or NDIS disability support worker?

Being a support worker can be a highly rewarding yet demanding career. A passion and dedication to maximising the quality of life of those receiving your support is essential. Personal qualities like respect, honesty, flexibility and communication skills give support workers a well-rounded base to connect with clients.

It also helps to be patient and have an understanding, supportive and caring nature – empathy goes a long way!

The NDIS Workforce Capability Framework is a great resource for disability support workers.


You do not need qualifications to provide social support and domestic assistance. However, if you want to provide more complex care, you may need certain qualifications and experience.

Qualifications can range from certificates and vocational qualifications to diplomas and university degrees.

Read our guide to support worker qualifications and requirements for more information.

Working on Mable as an aged care or disability support worker

You can work as an independent support worker on Mable by registering on the platform.

In order to begin providing support, there are minimum requirements you need to complete, such as police checks, reference checks, and, depending on the care you wish to provide, qualifications.

Learn more about onboarding requirements on the Mable website.

Why become an independent support worker on Mable?


Working as an independent support worker on Mable is a rewarding experience. The flexibility it provides allows you to live your kind of independence, all while making an impact on other people’s lives.

As you are an independent sole trader running your own business, you get to:

Read how providing support through Mable has given former social worker Kate more flexibility in her life.


Being an independent support worker on Mable also unlocks a range of benefits.

These include:

  • Mable Learning Hub: Access 170+ free courses available on demand, so you can expand your industry knowledge and grow professionally.
  • Insurance: Every support session booked through the Mable platform comes with high-level insurance.
  • Mable Tax Benefits: Receive tax advice and exclusive discounts on your tax return and quarterly BAS filing with our partner YOUtax.
  • Mable Wellbeing Platform: Access free and confidential counselling 24/7 through the our Wellbeing Platform.

Find out more about the benefits of joining Mable as a support worker.

What do I need to become a support worker on Mable?

To sign up and create a support worker account on Mable, you will need the following:

If you’ve set up your account correctly, it will be submitted for approval to our team.

If you’re planning on providing personal care, nursing or other allied health services read more about the qualifications you will need.


Being a support worker can come with challenges. Your day is likely to be busy and you will need to be able to think on your feet. It takes patience, an eagerness to learn and help and the ability to show empathy and resilience to be a good support worker. It can also be hugely rewarding and there are plenty of opportunities to work flexibly and with strong teams.

When you’re operating your small business on Mable as an independent support worker, you’ll have flexibility in the amount of hours you work in a day and how many clients you support. Workers can choose to work full time or part time hours, offering a range of services.

Support workers provide support to people with disabilities and can work in people’s homes, in specialised care settings or in hospitals on a full time, part time or casual basis, depending on the needs of the client.

They can provide a range of support services including social support, domestic support, personal care, and support with implementing nursing services, speech therapy, psychology, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy.

Learn more about what disability support workers do.

You can register on Mable as a disability support worker.

NDIS disability support workers provide a range of services to support clients, so the qualifications you need really depend on the area in which you are interested in specialising.

In general, there are no certifications or education requirements for disability support workers, however you do need skills to provide this support. There are several certifications that are valuable to have, such as Certificate III in Individual Support and/or a Certificate IV in Disability. To work with children, you’ll need a Working with Children Check, National Police Clearance and First Aid Certificate.

The NDIA also has worker training modules designed to support disability support workers to better support people with disability. You also need to comply with the NDIS Code of Conduct which helps providers and workers respect and uphold your right to safe and quality supports and services.

Learn more about how you can become a disability support worker.

For more information or to register as an independent support worker with Mable, visit the Mable website.