Getting to grips with the training

Today we spent five minutes catching up with our talented trainer Michael (Mick) McNeil to get a behind the scenes glimpse of his training role here at Abacare.

Mick is a registered nurse with more than 25 years caring and educational experience in areas such as acute medicine, elderly care and critical care.

This includes 10 years as a lecturer in adult nursing at Bangor University.

He is responsible for the training of all our carers here at Abacare in Wales.

How did you become a trainer Mick?

“Wherever I have worked, quality has been my main focus. I believe that the need for the delivery of high quality social care is of paramount importance. So I decided to become self-employed and turned my attention towards providing training for social care workers, working closely with domiciliary care providers and local councils.”

Why and when did you start training our carers?

“Due to my reputation in the field, I was approached by Abacare in 2014 and was tasked with developing a week-long training programme for carers new to this sector.”

What does the training involve?

“I believe that learning and development are an essential part of delivering care. The focus of the training week is that when caring in the community, the carer is dealing with real people with real needs. With this in mind, topics covered include the role of the social care worker in line with the code of practice, the importance of respect and dignity, moving and handling, emergency first aid at work, safeguarding, medicines awareness and dementia awareness.

“Furthermore, a whole day with a hands-on approach is devoted to personal care (as laid out in the Welsh Assembly document, Fundamentals of Care). Throughout the week, I use a variation of teaching styles and my aim is for the carer to view the world through the eyes of the person receiving care.”

Mick’s ongoing training programme began here in 2014 and since then more than three hundred carers have attended his course. Those who have heard Mick teaching in the classroom know that he is passionate about education and that he believes that it is vital that those who work in the care industry want to care, but it is essential that this care is underpinned with knowledge.

What gives you a buzz about training our carers?

“I am proud of the fact that a number of people have said to me: ‘I didn’t know that.’ And then go on to say: ‘But now I do.’

“To me, this means that the quality of care received by the person who needs it is improved as a result of time spent learning. It excites me to be able to say that as a direct result of my training and dedicated carers, hundreds of people across Wales are able to receive high quality care.”

How do you get feedback from our carers?

“During and after the training I get lots of feedback but also the outcomes of my work can be seen within the comments on the Abacare Facebook page.”

Some of the comments include:

“Just finished a week of training with Abacare. It was absolutely fantastic. Such a brilliant trainer in Mick McNeil and all the staff in the Bangor office were exceptionally friendly and helpful. I am absolutely buzzing tonight and can’t wait to start! Couldn’t recommend it enough!!”

“I have found the Abacare training week to be the best training I have ever received since working in Health and Social Care for the last 14 years.”

“The Trainer Mick McNeil was an absolute inspiration, with a way of communicating what we needed to know that reached people who have never worked in care before and people who have many years experience. He was extremely approachable and answered any questions we asked. It was interesting, informative and fun! I will thoroughly value the experience throughout my career and can’t recommend the training or trainer highly enough.”