Link Workers are non-clinical professionals employed by community-based, seniors-serving organizations. They help clients to develop and achieve a personalized set of goals by accessing community resources. Link Workers do not replace the role of healthcare providers. Rather, they complement a client’s medical care by providing additional support. Typically, this is not just a single referral but a supportive, wrap-around approach of service connection to support the full development of the individual, with their active participation and collaboration in the process. Link Workers connect clients to recreational and social programs, assist with accessing financial benefits and provide referrals to assisted transportation programs. They also connect clients to in-home support services, such as housekeeping and snow removal. Link workers also refer more complex issues to social workers who are a part of the social prescribing network in the community.
Healthy Aging Alberta has developed a 5-module e-learning curriculum for the Link Worker role that covers the Link Worker function and ecosystem, equity-based approaches to care, practical skills for serving clients, building community connections to support clients, and supporting Link Worker wellbeing. Interested Link Workers and other similar aligned roles in the sector can take the curriculum by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.