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Get the Skills to Become a Social Service Worker

Community Support Worker comforting a client during a therapy session.
If you’re interested in helping vulnerable people develop skills, consider becoming a Social Service Worker

32-Week* Social Services & Community Support Worker Training Program in British Columbia

As a Social Service Worker, you will help at-risk and vulnerable people take steps toward more secure, healthy, and independent lives. You help reshape and save lives by guiding individuals toward better life decisions. Your caring support will improve the quality of life and empower others to build strength and balance in their lives.

If you’re interested in improving the lives of vulnerable members of the community, you can transform your passion for helping others into a rewarding career as a Community Service Worker.

The best way to see if Cambria College is the right fit for you is to come in and visit the school. You can tour our facilities, and meet with both students and instructors. Book an Appointment Now or Get more info.

Social Services & Community Support Worker

32-Week* Diploma | $52,140 median annual salary**

  • Expected Job Openings in BC (2023-2033): 14,930**
  • Graduates hired by group homes, transition houses & overnight shelters
  • Advance into Social Work, Counselling, Addictions Support and much more!

** visited on May 30, 2024. Salary source for social and community service workers in British Columbia with lowest 10% earning $40,684 to the highest 10% of workers earning $65,000.

Becoming a Qualified Social Service Worker

This Diploma program prepares you to effectively manage the administrative and implementation responsibilities of a wide variety of mental health programs and services for individuals. This program is intended for people who are looking for a career in mental health support work, assisting people with personal and social issues.

Is a Career as a Social Service Worker Right for You? Take the Cambria College “Social Services Community Support Worker Career Training Readiness Quiz”

This fun, online quiz takes 3-minutes to complete and you’ll get a personalized report. Identify your strengths and social style plus the training and positions you’re best suited for. Get Your Social Services Community Support Worker Career Training Readiness Score Now >>

Practical “On-The-Job” Training

At Cambria College, we believe that you should not only complete training with theoretical knowledge, but with real experience in the industry. That’s why students in the Social Services & Community Support Worker program will complete a 100-hour practicum placement during their training.

Your practicum enables you to apply what you’ve learned in a real setting and gain not only experience to put on your resume, but also industry connections, references, and confidence.

Course Breakdown
Course No.Course NameHours
Business Computer Applications
Social Service Work Fundamentals
Psychology Fundamentals
Mental Health Fundamentals
Addiction Fundamentals
Ethics Fundamentals
Self-Care Planning
Resources, Referrals & Networking
Career and Employment Strategies
Interviewing Skills
Writing for Social Services
Family Studies
Populations at High Risk
Naloxone Certification
First Aid & CPR/AED Level C Certification
Food Safety Certification
Non-Violent Crisis Interventions (NVCI Certification)



Program Duration

Total Program Hours680
Work Experience Hours100
Total Program Weeks32*

Admissions Requirements

1. High School Graduate or equivalent OR mature student status (19 years or older prior to starting the program)

2. Meet one of the following English Language Proficiency requirements:

  • Minimum Grade 10 English (Domestic Students)
  • For English as second language students:
    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) overall band of 5.0 or higher, with a minimum 5.0 in each band,
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT) 38,
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL PBT 423-427
    • Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) 600,
    • Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) 6 or higher, with a minimum of 5.0 in all four skills,
    • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL): Score of 35 or higher with no sub score less than 35,
    • Pearson Test of English (PTE): Score of 35 or higher,
    • Cambridge English Language PET,
    • Duolingo English Test (DUOLINGO) 90
  • Pass the College’s English Assessment test with 60% or higher.

3. Immunization Report: Applicants must submit an immunization record that indicates current immunizations prior to the commencement of the work experience. Students are required to be immunized against with the following (and may vary depending on the work experience site):

  • TB test
  • Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis (Tdap)
  • Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR)
  • Hepatitis B
  • Varicella (Chickenpox)
  • COVID-19 x 2 doses

4. Clear Criminal Record Check Completion under the Criminal Record Review Program (CRRP).

5. Complete the “Student Declaration –Social Service Worker Program” form.

Learning Objectives

Upon successful completion of the program, you will be able to:

  • Gain a solid understanding of the available community social services
  • Define what is meant by “counselling”
  • Identify key values, knowledge, principles, and skills within an ethical framework appropriate for mental health workers
  • Describe the role of relationships in the lives of individuals, families, and communities
  • Outline a timeline and stages of human development
  • List theories of human motivation and emotion
  • Discuss stress-reduction techniques and their importance not just to clients but to mental health workers as well
  • Describe how and why some behaviours are thought of as “abnormal’
  • Outline the benefits and risks associated with psychiatric diagnoses and assessment
  • Identify the symptoms associated with certain commonplace mental health disorders and substance abuse
  • Outline the relationship of mental health and addictions
  • Articulate the impact on the client counsellor relationship with respect to cultural and diversity issues.
  • Analyze workplace ethical dilemmas with an eye to best practices.
  • Outline the various conditions of risk for mental health and/or substance abuse and how those conditions impact certain populations.

Program Fees

Domestic Students: 

  • Application Fee: $250
  • Assessment Fee: $100
  • Tuition: $9,000
  • Textbooks: $1,100

Total: $10,450

International Students: 

  • Application Fee: $500
  • Assessment Fee: $100
  • Tuition: $11,700
  • Textbooks: $1,100

Total: $13,400

Career Opportunities

Upon completion of the Social Services & Community Support program, students will seek employment with family social service agencies, community mental health centers, facilities for the physically and developmentally disabled, group homes, drop-in centres, life skills programs, outreach services, and supported housing initiatives.

  • Family Social Service Worker
  • Community Mental Health Worker
  • Resident Support Worker
  • Addiction and Counselling Support Worker
  • Women Shelter Worker

Designed to prepare graduates for NOC 4212.

This program is approved by the Private Training Institution Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Post-Secondary Education and Future Skills.

Is a Rewarding Career as a Social Service Worker Right for You? Get More Info…

If you’re interested in learning more about a career as a Social Service Worker and exploring whether Cambria College is right for you, fill out the form on this page to receive more information.

For immediate questions, call your nearest Cambria College location today.

Richmond: (604) 242-4000
Surrey: (604) 416-5522
Vancouver: (604) 428-7500
Victoria: (778) 265-7547

*Program length when completed in normal time