What they do
Diversional therapists, plan, organise, schedule and run leisure and rehabilitation activities that enhance the physical, social and emotional wellbeing of their clients. They work with people in aged care, who have physical or intellectual disabilities, or mental illness, as well as people undergoing medical treatment or rehabilitation from injury or surgery. They liaise with other health care professionals about the needs of their clients and discuss their clients' interests, and help them to find activities that appeal to them. They organise outings and activities for their clients, coordinate these activities and assist their clients in managing their lifestyle choices. Diversional therapists work mostly in cities and large regional centres.
Specialisations include: Activities coordinator, Activities officer
Diversional therapists work in aged care facilities, youth and community centres and other organisations that provide social assistance within the community. They may also work with organisations that offer healthcare and social services to people with specific disabilities, such as blindness or deafness. Diversional therapists may also work in private practices or consultancies. They may work full-time or part-time, and usually work regular business hours. They are often required to work with people with severe intellectual or physical disabilities, who require specialist care.
Tools and technologies
Diversional therapists use computers to plan and organise the therapy schedules of their clients. They also work with a range of therapeutic materials including arts and craft materials, musical instruments, sports equipment, and other recreation equipment. They may consult textbooks and reference materials to determine the most appropriate treatment for their clients.
How do I become one?
Education and training
To become a diversional therapist you usually need to gain a qualification in diversional therapy, or a related area such as therapeutic recreation, or leisure and health studies.
There are no relevant courses available in Western Australia but courses are available interstate or by distance education.
Charles Sturt University offers a Bachelor of Science (Leisure & Health) via distance education. Contact the university for more information.
Required registration and licensing
To work as a diversional therapist in Western Australia, you will need to obtain a National Police Certificate and a Working with Children Check issued by the Working with Children Screening Unit of the Department of Communities. You may also need to obtain a Senior First Aid Certificate.