A nursing home activities director or coordinator works with residents to provide them with pastimes, from crafts to musical entertainment, that keep them engaged and offer social interaction. Activities directors may also help bring religious services and clergy into the nursing home for the residents, as well as organise volunteers.
The hourly mean wage for a nursing home activities director as of May 2010 was £7.80 ($12.12), and the annual mean salary was £16,395 ($25,220), according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which classifies the job as a recreation worker. The bureau estimated that 33,760 people were working as nursing facility activities directors or coordinators in the United States.
Activity directors or coordinators usually have several years of experience in social or recreational programs, often in health care settings. They provide daily activities, including during the evenings and on weekends, as well supervise other staff, such as assistant activity directors. They also work with other nursing home staff to ensure that residents' needs are being met and to discuss their care.
Nursing home activity director jobs require a high school diploma, although directors with college degrees can earn higher salaries, according to the bureau . While activity directors do not have to be certified, some nursing home administrators prefer to hire ones who are certified through the National Certification Council for Activity Professionals. The organisation offers four tracks for certification, which involve college education, experience, continuing education or a combination of these qualifications. Those who are certified may also earn higher pay.
Nursing and residential care facilities employ 16 per cent of recreation workers, according to report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Job opportunities for recreation workers overall will grow faster than the average of other occupations, and employment is expected to increase by 15 per cent between 2008 and 2018, with many of the new jobs in nursing homes as the nation's population ages.