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How Embracia nurtures the next generation of care providers

September 11, 2019

Australia is getting older and wiser – 1 in 7 Aussies, or 15% of the population, were aged 65 and over in 2017. Those figures are projected to increase over the next few decades. As our population continues to age, empathetic and competent care providers are needed more than ever.

Embracia believes in the transfer of valuable skills and knowledge to aspiring care providers through its prestigious student program. These students are an integral part of the community, cultivating friendships with residents and staff. The most promising candidates go on to become Embracia employees and leaders in the aged care industry.

More on our student program

This year, we have close to 300 students from up to 10 registered training organisations (RTOs) studying certificates in individual support and ageing support services. These students are poised for personal care assistant positions upon completion of their studies.

Embracia understands the need for more suitably qualified workers to be able to provide quality, person centred care to its residents.

Our approach to hands-on learning

Our students typically receive 120 to 160 hours of placement with our nursing home, as well as a comprehensive induction. To help them settle into this new environment, the students are assigned to certain lifestyle areas and sections of our aged care facility, giving them the opportunity to get to know the residents, who love seeing new faces in the home.

The benefit of this arrangement is two-fold: first, it gives the students an authentic experience of what it would be like to work in a care facility. Second, residents thrive on the attention, care, and engagement they receive, enabling them to create new friendships, if only for a short period of time.

Students wear colour coded name tags indicating to staff and residents that they are still in training so residents are aware that they are working in a limited capacity and can’t help with absolutely everything just yet. Our colour coded system works as follows

Blue- Student is new and only able to work in lifestyle.

Red- The student’s first few days in a household, they must have constant supervision from staff and are observing only.

Orange- As the student’s confidence and skills develop they are able to interact with residents more independently.

Green- Towards the end of the student program, it is all systems go and the student is able to work as they would as a Personal Care Worker.

Residents’ involvement in the student program

Our residents are usually the best opinions on how well the students have done during their work experience. Having a great relationship with the residents is often one of the best indicators that the student could be a good choice for a future role.

For their part, students have reported gaining fulfillment from the program as they get to experience the environment first hand, helping them see what it’s like to look after the residents and help them with day-to-day activities

They learn the importance of building relationships and friendships with residents and staff to make caring for residents a more enjoyable experience. This reduces any stress or discomfort for everyone in the community and helps students fulfill their duties to the highest levels.

How to join

Embracia has facilities in Reservoir and Moonee Valley. Dianna Chapman is in charge of Education, Learning and Development.

Get in touch with us  to find out how you can join our student program and start a career in the aged care industry.

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A Trip Down Memory Lane- the benefits of reminiscing in aged care

July 24, 2019

Reminiscence can be a powerful tool when working in aged care.
There are many positive benefits to reminiscence and various activities that can be utilised to recall memories. By reminiscing, it can help the elderly to find meaning, form friendships and in some instances can help to gain closure.

What is reminiscence?

Reminiscence, sometimes described as “random remembering”, is the joyful recollection of people, experiences, and relationships from the past. This is often done through storytelling, daydreaming, and nostalgia.

Anyone who has lived to a certain age will indulge in reminiscence at one point, like remembering the movie you watched on your 10th birthday, getting your first car, or the dress your wife wore the day you proposed.

As we advance into old age, reminiscence takes on more significance. Experts who have studied aging and memory believe that seniors who were able to look back on life events in all their highs and lows enjoyed a greater deal of satisfaction.

For the American Psychological Association (APA), reminiscence in the form of oral and/or written histories is used in therapy to improve psychological well-being.  Psychologists, psychiatrists, nurses, and social workers have used it to help the elderly cope with some of the challenges that come with old age.

Although it is often used interchangeably with “life review”, some practitioners differentiate between the two.

While reminiscence is the spontaneous, passive, and simple recollection of memories, life review is a more structured process that revolves around certain life themes relating to the participant’s childhood, family life, and career, just to name a few.

Why revisit the past?

There are many benefits to reminiscing, including:

  •  Closure – Reminiscence allows individuals in aged care to look back on past conflicts with the benefit of hindsight, maturity, forgiveness, and understanding, allowing them to move forward and live in the present.
  • Meaning – People tell stories to create meaning. Reminiscence helps the elderly recreate their lives’ meaning by connecting the past with the present. It’s also a way for them to reflect on their accomplishments so that they develop a deeper appreciation for what they have done in their lives.
  • Quality of life – Those who reminisce have been shown to have a better outlook on life. Remembering and sharing positive memories not only lifts their mood and self-esteem, it also eases depression. It offers relief to seniors who are less mobile, as it helps them go back to a time when they were more physically active.
  • Communication – As residents engage in animated conversations about the past, memories and emotions are ignited, increasing their ability to communicate. It also allows them to communicate in ways that are meaningful and more personal to them.
  • Connection – Reminiscing can be done in groups, helping residents find common interests and experiences, and gives them opportunities to connect meaningfully with new people.
  • Family history – It helps preserve memories that can be passed down from one generation to another, forging family histories.

Reminiscing activity ideas

Reminiscing can be done one-on-one, within groups, or within families. Having a reminiscence group in a nursing home enables the elderly to start friendships with those in their group and gives them other people to confide in. The spontaneous and unstructured quality of reminiscence also puts them at ease, encouraging them to share more of their recollections in a warm and lively setting.

These ideas can help you get started:

  • Guessing games – Let participants guess the name of an object, place, or famous personality by giving them clues.
  • Famous faces – Show them photos of famous people from past decades to jog their memory and spark conversation.
  • Songs from the past – Bring in an old turntable, play popular songs from their era, and have them guess the title and the artist.
  • Famous movie quotes – Read out popular quotes from old movies and have them guess the title.
  • Games they played as kids – Describe popular kids’ games and toys from their era and have them guess what it is.
  • Remembering the year – Every year and decade has its fads, cultural movements, and historic events. Choose a year or decade, and encourage the participants to share meaningful anecdotes from that time in history.

Through our varied lifestyle program, Embracia plans meaningful and engaging activities for their residents. Often these activities involve reminiscence and evoke a lot of warm and happy memories for our residents.

If you would like to learn more about our program, Contact Embracia today or book a tour and we will happily show you what we are all about.

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