Aged care forum results in new TAFE qualification

A new qualification will address the need for further training in one of the biggest employment areas in the shire.

A recent forum on aged care discussed the issue surrounding this sector and identified a need for more training opportunities.

At a council meeting in 2016, it was proposed a meeting should be held between aged care providers in the Highlands, TAFE, University of Wollongong and the Southern West Sydney Private Health Network.

On April 6, representatives met to discuss what could be done to further this goal.

The forum was facilitated by council following recommendations that identified a need to revise training and education programs to meet the growing needs of the aged care sector.

Starting from May 1, a Certificate IV in Ageing Support will be offered at Moss Vale TAFE. The Cert IV will be in conjunction with the University of Wollongong (UOW) Pathway Program.

Students will have access to a free bridging subject delivered by UOW Southern Highlands. 

This will offer academic skills workshops designed to assist the transition of students to study at Bachelor degree level after completing the Cert IV. UOW Southern Highlands campus manager Stephen Lowe, who chaired the working group, said the purpose of the forum was to hear from employers and experts in the aged care sector about their future training needs to meet employment growth.

“It is clear from the discussions there is support from providers for more education and training programs to be delivered,” he said.

“These could be full degrees in areas such as nursing, dementia care and gerontology through to short professional development programs in a range of health disciplines relevant to aged care.” A report will be presented in May for consideration by the working group and education providers.

Mr Lowe said there was discussion about the need to promote the diverse range of careers available in the aged care sector, especially to young people.

“One outcome from the forum was the decision to hold a careers day for school leavers and the general public – discussions are underway with Harbison about hosting such a day on June 14.”

An information session about the new course including sponsorship opportunities will be held on April 26 from 12.30pm at the UOW Southern Highlands campus.

Contact 4869 1888 or email highlands@uow.edu.au to register.

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