It’s not just medical training that’s important when you work in health and social care sector.
Caring for the old and vulnerable requires a special set of skills and, as well as the medical training required for staff, there is a wider set of general skills and knowledge required to ensure a team is delivering the best care possible for residents.
This was the case for residential care home Keb House, in Appleby, North Lincolnshire, which specialises in caring for older people and people with dementia.
While the care home had previously completed a number of compulsory training courses in things such as First Aid Nutrition and Health, they had also undertaken more specialist training in areas of care including dealing with challenging behaviour. This additional training had led to a huge change in the positive levels of care and staff confidence and staff and managers alike wanted to build on this.
Three team leaders were keen to enhance their professional development and progress to senior levels while the owner and manager were interested in ways they could improve their own food and nutrition knowledge. Another employee also wanted to gain a further qualification to enhance her skills and knowledge within the sector.
The business approached the Skills Support for the Workforce (SSW) project, which offers a broad range of fully-funded training courses to employees, including bespoke programmes, of predominantly small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Any business with growth ambitions seeking non-compulsory, work-based training to support their business growth is eligible for the programme, and the cost is co-financed through the European Union’s European Social Fund (ESF) and the Education and Skills Funding Agency.
Fresh Training Services (UK) Ltd is a specialist national training provider in the health & social care and hospitality sectors. As one of the registered training providers for Calderdale College, which oversees the delivery of the SSW programme, Fresh Training Services were asked by Calderdale to visit the Keb House team and undertake a skills analysis session.
After exploring a range of options, together they developed a tailored training programme to improve the skills, knowledge and competence of staff in order to achieve the highest standards in service provision.
The staff were enrolled on various ESF funded courses delivering a 12 to 16 week training programme with a mixture of face to face training, support and independent research.
Helen Young, owner at Keb house comments: “The courses not only met our short term needs but will also stand us in good stead for the future, so we will continue to benefit from this training for years to come. And because the courses are theory based we were able to complete the face-to-face teaching and learning session on site which fitted in around our working patterns and meant staff weren’t taken off site for days to complete the training.
“We also have monthly visits as well to support all the learners, so we feel supported in our goals to upskill and implement the training in a practical way to deliver benefits for the whole team and all the residents we care for.”
Having completed courses in Food Production and Cookery, a Diploma in Health and Social Care and a Certificate in Team Leading, the six employees and the residents are really noticing the benefits.
Debbie Young the manager has introduced a range of new menus using her new found nutritional knowledge and the team leaders are becoming more confident and taking on more responsibilities.
Learners have a greater understanding of how to use situational leadership styles and those completing the team leading qualification are making more effective decisions and not relying upon managers to make decisions.
As such, Keb House is looking at further learning and development, including the opportunities of completing Apprenticeships in the future.
Fully Funded Training
Ebrahim Dockrat, External Funding Director of Calderdale College, the main contractor for Skills Support for the Workforce, highlighted the benefits of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP project: “There is a wide range of flexible, bespoke training plans designed to help businesses grow. By training your staff, you can improve your ability to adapt to a rapidly changing business environment, nurture a leadership team for the future and make you an employer of choice for emerging talent.
“As this training is funded with European money, which we only have available until March 2019, it really is a case of get it whilst you still can.”
For more information on the Skills Support for the Workforce project and to see if your business is eligible for fully-funded training, please click here