Experiential Placement Service

Experiential Placement Service

Smiling Cat Ventures Final Logo

 (I am posting this to generate as much interest as I can in this Placement Service, which aims to find short placements for students on the health and social care courses, within the North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead and Newcastle upon Tyne areas. I would appreciate you passing this blog around to anyone who may be in a position to help, i.e. anyone with a health or social care based service or ‘home’ – many thanks, Jonathan Wade)

The Experiential Placement Service is a collaboration between Smiling Cat Ventures, and Newcastle College.

The aim of the Service is to provide an experiential work-based placement.  All placements are focussed on engaging with service users to increase the students’ understanding of individual personal needs and improve communication and listening skills.  The key is that students learn to relate to service users, their family and the Carers looking after them, by gaining an understanding of what they are going through with their individual circumstances. These elements can be taught in a classroom but real insight can only be gained through actually being with those that are dealing with the situation.

The Experiential Placement Service utilises ultra-safe web platform technology by creating a paperless system of communication and support connecting tutors, students and placement providers. It is fully supported by the Newcastle College and Smiling Cat Ventures, with robust safeguarding systems in place.

The providers of placements range from:

  1. Care Centres;
  2.  Day Centres;
  3. Disability and Other Community Groups;
  4. Community Domiciliary Services;
  5. Community Nursing Services;
  6. Nursing Homes;
  7. Care Homes;
  8. Residential Homes;
  9. EMI Support Centres;
  10. Private Sector Care and Support Organisations
  11. Third Sector Care and Support Organisations

All placements are based on the following core conditions:

  1. All students are DBS cleared and this will be available to the placement provider;
  2. All students will have a set of learning aims and objectives that they will be responsible for completing.  These can be made available to the placement provider;
  3. All students will have undergone core training such as Safeguarding, Infection Control, etc., but are prohibited from doing any personal care during these placements unless directly agreed with the education provider;
  4. All students are tasked with listening to and engaging service users and their families as their primary goal, to understand the world through the eyes of the service user;
  5. All students are fully covered by Newcastle College’s insurance;
  6. Student placements are based on 100 hours of work-based learning spread over 6 – 8 weeks.  When they attend, which days and times they attend, is for the student and the placement provider to negotiate so it does not inconvenience the provider ;
  7. Placement opportunities should allow students to engage with service users and their families, from shadowing domiciliary care provision to delivering activities in a care setting;
  8. All students are adults, 19 years or older, and are placed to engage with adult service users;
  9. All students are placed in pairs as research has shown students do far better working in partnership with another student, it increases their confidence and enriches their placement experience.

Thanks to providers of placements, Students gain in a variety of ways:

  1. Improved understanding
  2. Improved communication skills
  3. Improved confidence
  4. Increase sincere empathy
  5. Increase knowledge

Placements work positively for the care setting providers as it showcases their potential as future employers and creates a closer relationship with education. But more importantly the placement provider gives each student experiential learning opportunities.  This plays a significant part in helping education providers to produce better quality carers of the future and directly contributes to improving the quality of care.

By working together Smiling Cat Ventures and Newcastle College are producing ‘carers’ who are better skilled and more prepared to take on the challenges of the career they have chosen in adult health and social care. The provider of placements should be in no doubt as to the positive contribution that each placement makes to improving care and the ability of our future ‘carers’. This is the key elements to turning out Carers that are of the highest quality, and you never know they could be your future employees.

Any questions & confirmation of placement offer:

Placement pre-start visits will be arranged for the end of January and placements start in February at a time and date that suits you, the provider. I hope this has answered many of your questions, but if you do have further questions please just email enquiries@smilingcatventures.org

If you are prepared to offer a placement to Students, please ask for the registration form from enquiries@smilingcatventures.org , which takes only 5 minutes to complete and then simply email back to enquiries@smilingcatventures.org

On behalf of Students, Newcastle College and Smiling Cat ventures we are very appreciative of any placement that is offered and we will ensure you are supported.

 Yours sincerely

Alison McLaughlin

Director of Project Development

Smiling Cat Ventures (www.smilingcatventures.org)

Innovative Minds at Work (www.innovativemindsatwork.org)

IBCV (www.ibcv.org.uk)