Hospices take part in National Apprenticeship Week

Categories: Community Engagement.

National Apprenticeship Week runs from 11 to 15 March 2013, and the theme is ‘apprenticeships deliver’. The week aims to highlight the value of apprenticeships for young people, who benefit from paid work, while also receiving work experience and qualifications which can lead to good careers. In return, organisations and charities who offer apprenticeships receive a high standard of work and benefit from numerous funding opportunities and other incentives.

Princess Alice Hospice

In Esher, Princess Alice Hospice offers a number of full-time apprenticeships in its retail division, where apprentices form part of the larger team that generates over £1 million towards vital patient care and support.

Hugh Osborne, 21, from New Hall currently works on a part-time basis as a weekend worker within the Weybridge store. Hugh joined the charity in March 2011 and completed his apprenticeship in December 2012. Following A levels Hugh decided to seek apprenticeship opportunities and selected the retail sector due to the variety of roles that it could provide. Hugh has developed skills in sales, customer service, logistics and distribution; he has also benefited from in-house training in stock valuation and pricing.

Hugh said: “The experience and structured training that Princess Alice Hospice has given me has been of great benefit in helping to build up my CV. Being able to learn about EPOS systems, gift aid registration and banking reconciliation early in my career has given me an edge over other job seekers.”

David Prest, retail director, said: “Princess Alice Hospice engagement in the National Apprenticeship scheme creates positive opportunities for young people, strengthening our relationship with local communities.”

“The individual benefits from earning while learning, obtaining a qualification that relates to a work place setting while gaining experience, skills, and knowledge that adds to their CV. As an organisation we have benefitted from developing and coaching enthusiastic individuals into valued and skilled colleagues.”

St Cuthbert’s Hospice

St Cuthbert’s Hospice has also highlighted the success of their apprenticeship scheme. Natalie Blake, aged 18, worked as a healthcare apprentice at the hospice, which helped her to gain valuable skills and qualifications and the experience of working as part of a dedicated team. She said: “Learning from the qualified nurses and healthcare assistants who are around me means I am learning at a faster rate than what I would if I was just in the classroom, and I am developing the key skills I need to fulfil my ambition to go to university to train to be a nurse.”

St Cuthbert’s also offers work placement programmes for adults of any age, which run for periods of a minimum of eight weeks. The placements allow participants to receive training as well as gain valuable work experience, and they can also help minority groups such as those dealing with mental health issues and disabilities to boost their confidence and self esteem.

To find out more about National Apprenticeship Week, visit the Apprenticeships website

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