CHOOSING A CAREER / SEP. 10, 2014
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How to Become a Neighbourhood or Community Warden

Neighbourhood or community wardens tackle anti-social behaviors and reduce crime in society. By doing this, they improve the quality of life in the community and make residents feel secure. If you want to pursue a career that requires little formal training and gives you the opportunity to positively impact other people’s lives, this is it.

What do neighbourhood/community wardens do?

Neighbourhood wardens typically perform the following duties;

  • Responding to cases of anti-social behaviors
  • Handling issues of littering, dog fouling and fly tipping
  • Reporting high level crime cases to police forces
  • Taking part in community projects
  • Attending community meetings and giving professional advice on responsible citizenship
  • Patrolling neighbourhood to ensure various properties are secure
  • Sharing information with the local authorities and environmental agencies.

Work Environment

Neighbourhood wardens normally work for 37 hours a week with part-time and weekend work often available. During sporting events and public meetings, they may work overtime.

These wardens spend their time outdoors and are normally on foot conducting patrols. They wear specific uniforms so that they can be distinguished easily from civilians and police forces.

Salary

Salaries for neighbourhood wardens vary with the level of job experience as shown below;

Work position

Annual pay

Junior wardens

£17,000 - £24,000

Senior wardens

£26,000 - £30,000.

Source: National Careers Service.

Entry Requirements

To become a neighbourhood warden, you need to have a good general education (high school level), excellent communication and interpersonal skills and some experience working with the public.

Prospective employers may interview you to measure your understanding of various issues facing the community.

To gain the experience required to start you off, you can volunteer in the following organizations;

Because some neighbourhoods provide wardens with patrol vehicles, a driver’s license can come in handy. You may also need to pass the Disclosure and Barring Service background check before you can be considered for employment.

Important Skills and Abilities

To deliver your services as a neighbourhood warden effectively, you will need to possess the following skills and abilities;

  • A genuine desire to impact and improve people’s living conditions
  • Excellent interpersonal skills to work with the residents in your area effectively
  • Attention to detail to easily gather useful information from the community
  • The ability to handle aggression and violence easily
  • The ability to work with people from various backgrounds without being judgmental
  • The ability to work both as part of a team and as an individual
  • The determination to work in harsh conditions, such as conducting patrols during rainy days.

Training and Development

After getting a job, you will spend about six months in job training and probation. Each of these activities takes three months.

Although there are limited career progression opportunities for neighbourhood wardens in the UK, some proceed to join local police offices. This involves successful meeting the standard police recruitment requirements.

Job Opportunities

Neighbourhood wardens often work for;

  • Local authorities
  • Housing associations
  • Town Centre management companies
  • Community policing organizations.

After serving for some time and gaining enough experience, you could be promoted into senior positions such as;

  • Assistant head warden
  • Senior warden
  • Warden coordinator.

The following links can be useful when looking for a job;

Finally, this career gives you the chance to leave a positive mark in society and make it a better place for future generations. If you are up to the task, go for it!

 

Image Source: Photobucket Inc.

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