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Participating in a free online program with other aged care professionals working in dementia care was an invaluable and inspiring experience for Dementia Care Co-ordinator Wil Hendrikx.
“I shared experiences and learnings with like-minded professionals who are truly passionate doing magnificent work to improve the lives of people with dementia,” she said.
The Dementia Australia Communities of Practice program fosters discussion and collaboration among those working in aged care who understand dementia.
With more than two-thirds of aged care residents having moderate to severe cognitive impairment, there is a vital need for person-centred and informed dementia-specific care within the aged care workforce.
One of the advantages for Wil was that she gained ideas and opportunities to create positive experiences for care residents, families, staff and volunteers.
“Being part of this program has been inspiring, motivating and empowering,” she said.
“I am new to my role, so the feedback and support has been extremely beneficial.”
Shared knowledge for greater understanding
Western Australian Aged Care Practice Advisor Laura Coleman said connecting with peers from across Australia during the monthly online sessions was a key benefit of the program.
“I feel like I am part of the bigger picture,” Laura said. “Plus, new education and information are helping me in home care situations.”
Warrnambool City Council South-West Carer Respite Program Co-ordinator Mary McLeod said another feature of the program was hearing from advocates with a lived experience of dementia.
“You are also learning from experienced peers and Dementia Australia professionals which is hugely beneficial,” Mary said.
“The online meetings are short and informative and stay within 90 minutes which is appreciated because of my current workload.”
What the Communities of Practice program offers
The free online program:
- provides a shared opportunity for ongoing learning with people working in the same areas
- empowers and encourages people to lead the charge for change to support people with cognitive decline and dementia in aged care settings
- opens up opportunities with participants to be among the first to learn about emerging improvements in dementia care
- solidifies and builds lasting relationships with health professionals and caregivers working in dementia care.
Register for the Communities of Practice program
If you work in aged care in Australia and have a basic understanding of working with people with dementia, then why not consider joining the Dementia Australia’s Communities of Practice program?
It is an opportunity to give back to the workforce and grow your skills.
From care workers and allied health professionals to nurses, this online program will ensure you are well-prepared to meet the needs associated with dementia care.