Torbay Council’s Community Carers Project, which currently offers the region’s 16,000 unpaid carers access to a vast range of online health and support information, enters its next stage, with the launch of a free online learning resource.

To mark the start of Carer's Week 2018 (11-17 June), the Torbay Community Carers Project, headed by Torbay Council, has teamed up with Healthwatch Torbay and Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust's Torbay Carers Service, to offer three drop-in events to showcase the online learning resources available to carers in the area.

Carers and Volunteers Lead at the Trust, Katy Heard said: “We want to make sure that we are providing the carers in Torbay with the tools they need and want, to help make life a little easier with an opportunity to progress, and actually use their experience.”

About the project

The Torbay Community Carers Project, initially started with a focus group event in February, attended by carers and members from over 10 local voluntary organisations. Discussions with the community highlighted that there was a strong requirement to have improved access to existing resources, as well as the creation of new ones.

Over 20 online video libraries have now been set up and connected to local charity websites, providing a central place for information resources to be accessed, including over 200 health information videos, and links to national charities, advice networks and local support groups.

New learning opportunities for carers

Torbay & South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, alongside their partnership organisation Health and Care Videos, have created a digital, video based version of the Care Certificate that has also received accreditation from City & Guilds. The Care Certificate ensures organisations are meeting the requirements of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and that care workers are providing high-quality and compassionate care, their staff induction process includes completion, or referenced learning to the Care Certificate. This is a set of learning modules or standards that cover the knowledge, skills and behaviours expected of specific job roles in the health and social care sectors. It includes topics such as safeguarding, manual handling and awareness of mental health, dementia and learning disabilities.

To support Torbay Community Carers Project and in line with the Proud to Care initiative, a less formal version of the Care Certificate has been developed, the Care Cert Lite, that offers carers the chance to undertake further learning online and at their own pace.

Torbay Council’s Executive Lead for Adults and Children, Councillor Julien Parrott, said: “Torbay Council is making this resource freely available to all unpaid carers in Torbay and it can be accessed through any of the existing online libraries. I would encourage everyone to get involved and take full advantage of such an exciting opportunity.”

Torbay carer Madeleine Dray, said: “After completing a few modules of the Care Cert Lite test version I was surprised to realise how much I knew already. It really improved my self-confidence, making me feel that despite doubting my abilities, I’m actually doing a good job and could use my skills to get paid work in the future if I wanted to.”

Come and find out more at our Drop-in Days

There are two further opportunities to meet Daisy Whitney, Project Manager from Health and Care Videos. They will both offer a chance to find out more about the Torbay Community Carers Project, browse the carers video library and discover the free online learning resources available, as well as learn how to successfully complete the certificate in your own time.

  • Monday 11 June - Healthwatch and Torbay Carers Office (in Paignton Library)
  • Friday 15 June - Paignton Library Foyer

What else is on offer?

Monday 11th June will also provide carers with the opportunity to benefit from the ongoing digital support of Healthwatch Torbay and practical employment support and advice from Torbay Carer’s service - not forgetting plenty of free tea and coffee!

If you would like to build on your skills as a carer, or learn more about the Torbay Community Carers Project and how it’s helping improve resources and access to advice and information, please do come along.

For more information visit the project website or call 01626 833937.


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