Model Aged Care Program Proves Life-Changing

A decision to take action and respond to an advertisement for aged care training 15 months ago has paid off for 11 Coffs Coast women who recently completed their traineeship and are now all working in the industry.

ETC’s Training Manager Ingrid Hughes said over 200 people applied for the opportunity to undertake the traineeships in Aged Care with 4 different Aged Care providers in the region (Masonic Aged Care Coffs Harbour, Coffs Harbour Nursing Centre, Bellorana Aged Care and Sawtell Catholic Care of the Aged).

“This training program has been hugely successful because it has involved a partnership between ETC (the training provider), the Aged Care Sector, NSW State Training Services and the Australian Apprenticeship Centre,” Ms Hughes said.

“The program featured a speed dating style of interview process at the beginning to identify the most suitable candidates to participate in a 4-week pre-entry training course. From there, 14 participants were selected to undertake the traineeship.”

Ms Hughes said the traineeship provided a supported learning environment whereby the students learnt on the job and any new theory learnt was put into practice immediately in the workplace.

This style of learning particularly suited one of the graduates Michelle Perry who said she had previously started studying to be a Registered Nurse but pulled out because she was so overwhelmed once she eventually hit the ward floor.

“I loved how we were trained on the job because we were putting into practise what we were learning instantly and then once a fortnight all the trainees came together with our ETC trainer to discuss how we were going,” Ms Perry said.

Fellow graduate Jennifer Pike said all the trainees felt supported throughout the learning process.

“During our initial work placement we started by watching other carers, then we were assigned buddies to work alongside, and eventually we started working on our own but there were always other carers nearby,” Ms Pike said.

Ms Pike said she loved the regular hours, team environment and rewarding nature of the work in the Aged Care industry but admitted it wasn’t for everyone.

“If you’re considering a career in Aged Care I would recommend you visit some Aged Care facilities, arrange to do some volunteering and talk to other people working in the industry. It’s important to obtain a realistic view of what it’s like,” she said.

Michelle Perry had some initial reservations about working in the Aged Care industry but hasn’t looked back since making the decision to try it out.

“I was apprehensive about getting into Aged Care. I didn’t think I would be suited. But I absolutely love it. I love the elderly, their stories, and looking after them. There aren’t many jobs where you can walk out at the end of the day and know you made a difference in someone’s life – even if it’s just a smile on their face,” Ms Perry said.

For further information about training in Aged Care Training contact Laura Hooper on 0437 673 415.

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