Training and Education

It’s vital for volunteers to be fully equipped to carry out their duties and to feel comfortable about doing them.  For this reason, we provide a range of training education, and give all our volunteers additional knowledge and skills training to fulfil their role with confidence.

Every volunteer receives a handbook containing a role description which outlines their duties & responsibilities. It is our policy to ensure that a volunteer role complements the staff roles and that the work of staff is never substituted by volunteers.

Volunteers will receive notification for all mandatory training programmes in advance.

Highfield Healthcare will offer training to the successful candidates in the following areas:

  1. Fire training and evacuation techniques
  2. Protecting the vulnerable adult
  3. Hand washing techniques
  4. Social awareness & coping with challenging behaviour
  5. Brief outline of daily activity in the units
  6. How to report a concern appropriately.
  7. Wheelchair management

When the Garda vetting has cleared successfully and the mandatory training is completed, the volunteer will be placed in one of our units to shadow an existing volunteer until they are comfortable and familiar with the residents, the staff and the facilities.

Always remember that you should NOT take any task that you have not been trained or authorised to do. If you are uncertain or unhappy about doing any task you have the right to decline it or withdraw from any situation in which you do not feel comfortable.

 

                                                 

 

Note: You will not be confirmed as a volunteer with Highfield Healthcare until all the mandatory training has been completed.

As a volunteer you may also have the opportunity to attend additional training, free of charge at Highfield Healthcare, (CPR, First Aid, etc.) or workshops with external organisations (Volunteer Ireland conferences, Go for Life training) that will enhance volunteers’ confidence and skills. Details of these will be made available through the Volunteer Coordinator via email, texts, or phones calls.

Trial Period

When you first apply to be a volunteer with Highfield Healthcare there is a considerable amount to take on board.  We have large facilities, with many units, hundreds of residents and staff and with that comes many policies to keep us all safe and protected. For this reason we feel it’s most helpful for our volunteers to have a trial period of 3 months so that together we can ensure that the placement is the right one for you and our organisation.

There are a number of reasons why at the end of the trial period it may be concluded that the placement isn’t going to suit. We have found that some people underestimate the impact of the time commitment involved. Others have not felt emotionally equipped at the time to be in a residential care environment. This is not unusual and it’s this reason that we have the trial period in place – so that you don’t feel trapped in your commitment.

If it doesn’t work out, it’s better for everyone concerned for you to seek an alternative volunteering opportunity in which you can be at your best and happiest.

Regular Review

We endeavour to keep in touch with volunteers informally on a weekly basis. We know that things can change during the course of a year and to this end the Volunteer Coordinator aspires to meet one-on-one with each volunteer during the course of the year to discuss their contributions, feedback and plans for the future. With growing numbers of volunteers this is a challenging goal and it’s not always possible to achieve. For this reason, if you feel that you would benefit from a meeting of this nature please do request one so that you can have the conversation you need.

Summary

The organisation provides essential training that enables volunteers to carry out their duties to the required standards, as well as opportunities for on-going learning and education at no charge to volunteers.

  • Appropriate supervision
  • Reliable communication and information
  • Access to support when challenges or difficulties are encountered
  • Facilities for breaks and relaxation
  • Free parking facilities
  • A 3 month trial period to be sure that the role is suitable

To maintain quality standards and provide consistent professional support to our residents and staff we need to ensure reliability.  This is why we must insist on certain standards.