LJMU praised for 'making the city a better place'

Caring connections 2

Managers at a Merseyside care charity have praised LJMU for “making the city a better place” and sharing its’ own “community values”.

Social care charity Caring Connections, which has several managers on leadership courses at LJMU’s Liverpool Business School, says the skills they learned “got them though” the COVID-19 crisis.

“As a charity dedicated to the City of Liverpool and surrounding areas we selected LJMU as we feel it holds our same values of making the city a better place,” said the organisation’s CEO Paul Growney.

“By improving the skills of residents, improving business and improving the wellbeing of the population, LJMU is helping support the city through the pandemic.”

Vulnerable adults

Caring Connections specialises the provision of home care to vulnerable adults delivering around 5,000 hrs of care per month through a team of 50 employees. It additionally offers counselling, and therapy services, and has added £7 million in social value to the City Region in the past three years.

Like all organisations within health and social care this has been a massively challenging time for Paul and his team not least in managing people’s anxieties – both clients and staff.

“It was a scary time, there were many staff absences, more discharges from hospital and general feeling of the unknown. There were initially issues with sourcing PPE, supporting those who were shielding both staff and service users and ensuring we kept are most vulnerable people safe,” says Paul.

Caring Connection also had to make all counselling services telephone-based and with the help of LCR Cares funding launched a bereavement service online to support people who lost loved ones to the virus.

MBAs and post-professional training

“Although it was a really tough time there were positives; people have started recognising the value of social care workers and the work they do. As an organisation we dramatically increased our workforce, nearly double in fact mostly with people being attracted to helping others and giving back.”

Happily Paul and his senior team have benefitted from the professional development available at LJMU with Paul completing the Master in Business Administration (MBA) course in 2019 and starting a Doctorate in Business Administration, care services manager Rachael Fraser starting a MBA Senior Leadership Apprenticeship in 2019 and Katy Turner and Laura McCluskie, who are senior supervisors starting their Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeships earlier this year.

“The skills acquired on these courses have helped with our leadership and management decisions, particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic. The training has helped develop skills most notably in quality management, marketing and research.

All learners speak highly of the course, commending the ability to develop their academic understanding of leadership and business principles.

“It’s challenging and can be difficult to balance with the job role however if committed the benefits are great,” said Rachael.


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