Celebrating learning at work
To celebrate our amazing staff, on our staff portal this Learning at Work Week, we’ve been sharing lots of stories, blogs, and even a video interview, featuring some of our colleagues talking about their learning experiences.
Cheering each other on
To kick off, we shared a blog from Carrie, our leadership development coordinator. She describes some of the crucial changes made to staff training during the pandemic, and salutes the incredible efforts of everyone at Brandon. She goes on to explain how she, and the learning and development team, rose to the challenges, even gaining new qualifications to be able to facilitate online learning.
“As a team, we pulled together. We’ve had our highs and lows, all at different times. We have laughed loads, and there’s been a few tears.
“We have supported each other and cheered each other on when problems were solved.”
Carrie was on a bit of a roll, and on Tuesday, she put her interview skills to the test. She caught up with team leader, Karen, who is also Brandon’s autism good practice lead and experienced practitioner.
We discovered that Karen’s passion for supporting people with autism, is backed up with years of experience and qualifications, the highest being a Post Graduate Diploma in Autism. This sits alongside many more qualifications including; teaching, health and social care, management and leadership, communication, person-centred approaches, and ADHD support.
Karen consistently demonstrates her commitment to lifelong learning. Her interest in autism and her ongoing learning achievements, have undoubtedly contributed to her and the team, being shortlisted for the finals of the Great British Care Awards in the summer.
Next, we found out how someone we support and their support team, are enjoying the rewards of learning together.
With help from Brandon’s PBS specialists, and the Community Learning Disability Team (CLDT), the team received a bespoke training package, from which came lots of person-centred solutions.
Since the training, the individual is much more settled and engaged. Locality manager, Gemma, has also noticed a difference in the team.
“The training was like a ‘re-education’ for staff. Members of the team are more confident and now know how to manage situations more effectively when they arise.”
Taking on an apprenticeship
We also heard from Keily, social enterprise manager at Elm Tree Farm, who has just completed her Level 5 Operations and Departmental Manager Apprenticeship. She told us:
“I wanted to do this qualification to have an in-depth knowledge of operational practices such as project management. I knew that this would benefit me as I would learn more, and benefit the organisation as I gained knowledge that would help run the social enterprises at the Farm more effectively.
“The best thing about completing this qualification, was that it gave me more confidence in decision making. It also gave me lots of tools to help decide whether an idea will work in practice.”
We rounded the week off, celebrating the achievements of ‘super-learner’ new starters.
One new starter, Aaron, a support worker in London. He was new to social care when he joined Brandon and his enthusiasm was clear to see – he successfully completed 22 courses in his first 2 months.
As London was in lockdown at the time, he had to do all his training online, which he said was a real challenge at first. “And this was with me coming from an office background,” he said.
Learning about communication skills opened Aaron’s eyes to the Makaton system, which he soon began to learn from the people he supports, and he can now say over 30 different things!
Keen to share his aim to progress in his new career, Aaron explained:
“I’m looking forward to learning more with Brandon and hope to go on to become an experienced practitioner.”
These stories highlight the strength of Brandon’s learning culture, and recognises the dedication of our fantastic staff who strive to provide the best possible support.
Brandon’s learning and development team work tirelessly to ensure staff have the skills and knowledge required to do this, so we’d like to acknowledge them too!
Want to join our team?
To find out more about working with us, or to view our job vacancies, visit the jobs section.