CareTech Foundation Impact Report 2020/2021 >> Three new initiatives to address skills in the care sector
After three years, the CareTech Foundation continues to evolve and expand its impact, exploring and supporting new projects with a strong commitment to the Care Sector. It is committed to both uplifting recruitment to the Care Sector, and the empowerment and education of carers both locally, through The Carers Scholarship Fund in the UK and abroad partnering with Carers Worldwide.
In April 2021 the Foundation commissioned a three-month feasibility study from Transform Society with a £20,000 grant. This was to test the viability of a bold new talent and leadership development programme for the social care sector. The programme aims to address long-standing recruitment and retention issues within the social care sector.
The feasibility study produced a full evaluation of the sector, providers, current initiatives, and government position, scoping interest in the creation of a leadership development programme to address immediate and long-term leadership needs of the social care sector. To inform the study, Transform Society convened an Advisory Group chaired by Professor David Grayson CBE that brings together a high-profile range of leaders from across the social care sector and beyond.
“The social care sector urgently needs to attract high-calibre talent and significantly address leadership skills to instil long-term change from within. This requires a bold new initiative to make the social care sector a career of choice for the brightest and best – be that at graduate level or beyond. Increasing funding to support the recruitment of front-line care workers without also addressing structural issues in the sector that feed huge staff turnover is unsustainable.
“The approach of Teach First, Frontline and Now Teach (and related schemes) offer powerful examples of game-changing talent recruitment and leadership development campaigns that have transformed vital public services that were not seen as attractive to graduates and career switchers.”Jonathan Freeman MBE
“This is an exciting and powerful opportunity to bring together supply and demand for talent in a new and innovative way, embracing technology, leadership training and mentored future leaders to make much needed changes to the social care system.”Professor David Grayson CBE, who was Chair of the Advisory Group assembled to support the feasibility study
The Foundation is partnering The Open University (OU) to help fund the Carers Scholarships Fund which together will provide the equivalent of 50 undergraduate and postgraduate full fee-waiver scholarships a year. The Foundation has committed £39,996 which will fund 12 young carer students in the programme. The pioneering Carers Scholarships Fund enables carers to access life-changing education.
Open University’s flexible study meets the needs of those who are carers in that they can study where and when they are able and organise their learning around their caring responsibilities. Student carers are also able to access bespoke support from the OU’s Student Support Team, who have been trained to understand the challenges that they may face.
The first group of scholarship recipients began studying with the OU in October 2020.
“It is an honour that two of the top corporates in the care sector are supporting the OU’s Carers Scholarships Fund. Having CareTech and Hallmark Care Homes Foundation join this community of supporters, brings not just vital funding but also invaluable expertise into the mix and we look forward to building on this relationship in the coming years. This donation is truly wonderful and shows their commitment to the caring sector.”
In Bangladesh, CareTech Foundation’s partnership with Carers Worldwide follows a successful UK Aid-funded pilot of the programme involving 502 carers in Savar. Using match-funded grants of £94,027 the project will implement all five elements of the ‘Carers Worldwide Model’. The three-year programme will be delivered by Carers Worldwide and is co-funded by Rangoonwala Foundation. The project will upscale and expand the successfully tested approach to support unpaid family carers reaching an additional 500 carers in the region, addressing the social, mental, physical, and economic challenges facing the 1,002 carers.