An activities assistant generally works in an extended care facility and helps residents stay as active as possible. He/she is responsible for researching the best activities to stimulate the mind and body, so it is important that they stay up-to-date with the latest developments.
Some activities are physical education classes, while others may involve attending events or taking field trips for sightseeing. Working with outside entities is usually necessary in order to obtain teachers for such activities. Some classes may not have lesson plans, so they will need to be created and structured by the activities assistant. Another important part of the job is scheduling the activities and making sure they are at optimal times and do not conflict with each other.
Many of the activities are carried out on campus; however, some activities might require travel. The activities assistant may personally be responsible for transporting patients to off-campus activities, in which case a valid driver’s license is required. Participation in some activities in order to aid patients may also be necessary.
An affinity for working with people with a caring and patient attitude is essential, as some of the residents will have special needs. It is also important to be able to multitask and be very organized to carry out the various tasks required for the position.
Many positions only require a high school diploma or GED. However, years of experience may need to be required, and certification as an activity assistant, recreation therapist, or occupational therapy assistant may be required.
Activity Assistant Tasks
Prepare and submit patients' reactions and progress reports, confer with treatment team.
Assist patients to and from activities including outings.
Plan, organize and implement multi-faceted recreation activities for patients.
Supervise and instruct patients in activities and techniques designed to meet their specific physical or psychological needs.