18 Jul 2022
The pressure felt by the Sunraysia aged care sector will soon slightly ease with a group of newly qualified individual support workers set to make their way into the workforce.
Eleven SuniTAFE students are now undertaking their final placement in order to complete their Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) in the coming weeks.
SuniTAFE Languages & Health Support Education Delivery Manager Terry Alderton said the hands-on nature of the course and the need for aged care and disability workers within Australia has meant that almost 100 per cent of those who have previously completed the course have successfully landed employment.
“The feedback is always that during their last placement where they are beginning to feel pretty confident most of them will find they are offered employment at where they have completed that placement as they don’t want to lose them,” he said.
“There is a big shortage at the moment and with baby boomers coming through who are an ageing population, we are going to continue to need more workers to support people who need to go into facilities.
“Those completing the Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) can also support people living in their homes and under the NDIS plan now people have more access to getting support at home who are independently living so there is more workers needed in that area as well.”
SuniTAFE student Irene Alvanos is among those who have recently obtained employment following the completion of her Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015).
“I am really excited and eager to get out into the workforce and make a difference,” she said.
Ms Alvanos enrolled in the course following first-hand experience caring for her elderly grandfather.
“I wanted to do something that would make my kids proud of me and after caring for my granddad I knew I wanted to be a good carer for others and make a difference as one day that may be me that needs that kind of care and nurturing,” she said.
“There are many people who are vulnerable in our community and they really need our care and support and this is such a rewarding career path.
“I really enjoyed the course, I had great teachers and was with a lovely group of students who all helped each other when we needed it and the hands-on side of the course allowed us to have fun while learning.”
Students have had the ability to study the course full time over six months or undertake a night course part time which sees them complete the qualification over 12 to 18 months.
“In this course we have a to purpose designed facility, so when you walk through the doors it would be like walking into an aged care facility,” Mr Alderton said.
“There are beds, there is mannequins, there is lifting machines, there is showers and medication trolleys. We have all the things you would come across while working in a facility so when students get into the work force, they are really familiar with their surrounds.
“Initially they may not have the confidence to lift someone in a sling, but because they practice it many times on a mannequin which is the same weight as a person, they become quite confident in doing it and will then be ready to do it once they are into the workforce.
“They will also undertake a placement which builds their familiarity.”
Mid-year intake is currently open to those wishing to undertake the Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) in the second half of the year at either the Mildura or Swan Hill campus.
“If you are ready for a career change and want to knuckle down and complete the course in six months, you could be working in aged care by Christmas,” Mr Alderton said.
SuniTAFE Individual Support and Allied Health teacher Jenni Finch added, “it’s a career where life experience can help a lot but you can also be very successful coming into it straight from school if you have a nurturing and caring nature,” she said.
The qualification reflects the role of workers in the community and residential setting who follow an individualised plan to provide person-centred support to people who may require support due to ageing, disability or some other reason.
The qualification can lead to positions such as, Personal Care Assistant, Nurse's Aide, Support Worker, Residential Care worker, Transport Support Worker, or Field Officer (Community Services).
“It’s not for everybody of course, but there is a lot of caring nurturing people, who only need the training and qualification to move into a field that really suits their personality and their nature,” Mr Alderton said.
“There are a lot of people out there who would take the opportunity to get a career in aged care because it’s just natural to them.”
For those interesting in enrolling in a Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) visit www.sunitafe.edu.au/courses/health-and-community/chc33015-certificate-iii-in-individual-support.