If you have managed to get a hold of the 2020 course books for our Colleges you would have noticed a focus on Leisure and Health qualifications, this comes in response to your demand. Today we put this career category under the microscope.
ACE: Mel, you are the trainer for our Certificate IV in Leisure and Health at ACE Lismore and on the Gold Coast. Can you share a little insight into who is a best match for the course and what it can do for their career and employability?
MD: This is a great qualification for any one already working in a lifestyle position that may not already have the qualification and would like to consolidate their practical work skills with the theory.
However, it is also a great qualification for people wanting to make a change in their career direction. Assistant In Nursing and Personal Carers are a great match to transition into this role, if they find themselves naturally supporting the lifestyle team, or even stepping in when the facility is hosting special events – this is the qualification for them.
Employability is a big factor. It is a community care role with great flexibility, you can work full time, part time or even casually in this role. You can work within residential aged care facilities or community care positions such as respite centres and residential homes, the focus can be either Ageing or disability based.
ACE: What’s your professional career journey story Mel, and your motivation for being a trainer?
MD: When I was 19 I started my training as an enrolled nurse in a small country hospital based in Rural NSW, Cootamundra, a part of the training was working in the day respite service in the community centre that provided older people living at home, and long term older patients at the local hospital to participate in fun activities, such as art/craft, music/dance, trivia/word games, bowls/bingo, it was just a heap of fun and I was good at it ?
I worked in small country hospitals, and residential aged care facilities, disability services over the next 20 years, I eventually completed my Bachelor in Health Science (Leisure & Health) and worked for over 13 years as a Diversional Therapist for a residential aged care facility on the Gold Coast.
During this time, I completed my TAE qualification because I was passionate about teaching people how to work effectively in this industry, to understand the client’s holistic needs, and the importance of social wellbeing for overall health.
I believe, the Leisure and Lifestyle staff matter in this industry. It’s a very diverse role, that requires dedication, compassion, patience and respect. I would love to share my knowledge with anyone willing to learn.
ACE: Is there a best ever training moment that you can share?
MD: What I love is empowering students to connect with the learning, to understand how the theory supports their everyday job, how it can help them on a practical level in the work role.
I love the passion the students who currently work in the role have about their job, and I love when new students understand that it isn’t just about Bingo ?
I really enjoy training new people to provide the aged care and disability support system with better skilled workers, with empowered workers, with people who want to share the best parts of themselves to an industry that needs them.