YOU’RE HIRED! Meet Wirral Hospice St John’s apprenticesPublished on: 05/02/2021
National Apprentices Week (#NAW21) took place between 8-14th February with a theme of ‘build the future‘.
We thought it would be a good time to introduce you to our apprentices and, because #NAW21 finished on Valentine’s Day, we could share the love we have for them all, at Wirral Hospice St John’s.
Rhian, Tom, Vorrie and Hayley work, respectively, in workforce, finance, nursing and fundraising and after finding their feet, they’ve all added so much to hospice life.
It’s been a tough year for all of us so it is heartening to see our young(er) team members showing the resilience and commitment that is going to stand them in good stead for years to come.
We prepared a little piece about their progress at the hospice as a little tribute to them but, hopefully as inspiration for other people looking to go into apprenticeships to build their careers.
Here’s Rhian (pictured right), she previously studied Law, Business and Psychology at Birkenhead 6th Form College.
From a young age she was an enthusiastic volunteer at hospice events and became interested in the work the hospice does for, and with, our Wirral Community. When she saw the opportunity to become Workforce Development HR Support Apprentice (Wow! that’s a long title) she was delighted when, following interview, she was offered the role.
Having passed her level 3 Certificate in Professional Development (CIPD) she is now part way through the level 5 CIPD in human resource management and making great strides. She has a friendly approach and is well regarded by all of her colleagues around the hospice.
She explained how she really embraced the role and her ongoing learning,
“Being a part of Workforce Development at Wirral Hospice St John’s means I am involved in all of the plans to develop the skills of the people, including my own, from all of our services. The national apprenticeship scheme set me on my way. It’s a challenging time but because we have to be here for our patients and their families, above all else, everybody just keeps going. It’s a real privilege working with so many committed people.”
After studying computer science at Cheshire College South and West, Tom (pictured left below) saw the opportunity to become an apprentice, as an assistant accountant at Wirral Hospice, on the government website at www.gov.uk/apply-apprenticeship
He’s been here just over two years now and passed his level 3 certificate in December 2020. Tom’s now aiming towards a full chartered accountancy qualification and is working hard on his level 4 higher apprenticeship on his way to getting there.
He has quickly grasped the importance of financial controls for our charity, how income and expenditure works and gives everyone at the hospice heartfelt thanks for encouraging his learning.
“The hospice is a really nice place to work. The finance team have been so helpful and encouraging, I’m learning new things every week and I’m trusted to work on my own initiative.”
We asked one of his colleagues, and mentor, about Tom and they told us,
“Tom is a quick learner and always happy to assist. Most importantly though, he is just a really nice person. He’ll take on any task and asks questions if it’s something he needs more help with. We have every confidence in him.”
Now two years into her level 5 apprenticeship, Vorrie (pictured right), will graduate in 2022 as a Band 4 Nursing Associate.
She’s building a portfolio of skills through learning on the job at Wirral Hospice St John’s and also undertaking ongoing placements at the likes of Arrowe Park Hospital in Wirral, the children’s ward at the Countess of Chester, GP practices, various mental health providers and working with community nursing teams.
It really is all round knowledge-building with assessment and accreditation through the University of Chester.
Vorrie tells us she’s enjoying every minute.,
“I’d joined Wirral Hospice as a healthcare assistant and was delighted when the opportunity to apply for the Trainee Nursing Associate course came about and I jumped at the chance. I’ve been greatly supported by the hospice team on the inpatient ward from the start. They continue to support me now as I commence my second year of studies, they really are an amazing bunch and I’m so grateful!
I’m already considering carrying on studying after next year to become a Registered Nurse which is all possible now through the continuing apprenticeship programme.”
When asked for a line about Vorrie, a senior manager simply said, “She is amazing. I just love her.” Enough said!
Hayley (pictured left here) was studying at Birkenhead 6th Form College when she saw the apprenticeship in business administration tied to the Administration Assistant in Fundraising job, which was also advertised via the hospice’s social media channels.
After a successful interview she joined the fundraising team at one of its busiest times of the year. In a short space of time she was helping the senior fundraisers to keep a track of where donations were coming from and updating the hospice database.
Being part of the fundraising team means Hayley gets an all-round view of how the hospice secures its income to provide its services. Now she helps with all the various fundraising and marketing administration elements, lottery, retail, donor giving and events planning.
When the first wave of COVID 19 hit we had to send our volunteer receptionists home to shield. Hayley took over main reception duties for several months, greeting visitors, helping them to observe the hygiene regulations and directing the flood of calls and correspondence the hospice receives. This has given Hayley an even more rounded view of our hospice specialist care and support services.
Many staff have commented on her helpful attitude which has played a large part in her becoming an apprentice graduate now and after which her full time role as our Fundraising Assistant was confirmed.
“I’ve gained an understanding of what the hospice does to raise funds and how it publicises the projects, events and all of our core services. Most importantly my experience working main reception during the first lockdown means I now know WHY we raise funds. Everyone who works or volunteers here is really committed to the services we provide for our patients. I love working here, no two days are ever the same.”
Jane Bohan, Workforce Lead at Wirral Hospice St John’s, summed up the hospice’s view on our apprentices,
“They’re all really good people and we’re as lucky to have them, as they say they are to work here.
People of all ages and experiences, staff and volunteers, contribute to everyday life at the hospice and it is great to have young people with fresh ideas and skills as part of that.
The hospice is committed to its core services and a part of that is offering meaningful jobs and careers to Wirral people.
We’re currently planning, as far as we can, for a post-pandemic future where apprenticeships and ‘Kickstarters’ (16-24 year olds who receive universal credit) will be inspired to come on board.
The new Rhian’s, Tom’s, Vorrie’s and Hayley’s are all out there and just waiting to be discovered.”
Keep checking our website and social media channels where all of our latest apprenticeship and other vacancies will be advertised.