Kilkenny LEADER Partnership Supports St. Patrick's Centre during COVID

 A Local Development Company response to Covid-19

Kilkenny LEADER Partnership Successfully Fast-tracks Recruitment of key Healthcare Staff for St Patrick’s Centres during Pandemic Emergency

Kilkenny LEADER Partnership’s (KLP) bespoke employment placement programme, Kickstart began its current round in March 2020 when 12 participants were registered to take part as part of the Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme (SICAP).

Some of the placements had been agreed and arranged with local disability organisation, St Patrick’s Centre, Kilkenny.  The Kickstart placements were of an administrative nature and were, therefore, unfortunately put on hold due to the ‘work from home’ policy introduced by government.

However, more positively, the close collaboration and communication between St Patrick’s and Kilkenny LEADER Partnership’s SICAP Development Officer led to discussions about the recruitment of healthcare workers, which was identified as an emerging critical need.

This was a factor not only in St Patricks, but nationally with the ‘On Call for Ireland’ recruitment campaign.  The resultant competition to recruit new local staff was identified by potential employers as a real challenge.

Through their database, KLP Development Officers identified registered unemployed participants with the relevant Healthcare Level 5 qualification and started to prepare a list of potential candidates to refer and fast track through to interview in St Patricks.

KLP SICAP team were able to offer ‘one-one’ remote supports to individuals, assist them with their application form, update CVs and advise on any concerns expressed.  A total of 9 people were referred, 8 attended for interview and 5 have successfully been appointed in posts with St Patricks Centre and 1 person has accepted a position in a Nursing Home.

Mandatory Garda vetting and emergency fire safety training was completed within 1 week of interview.

“SPC send on their genuine thanks to Kilkenny Leader Partnership. During these stormy times, SPC needed to speed up our recruitment campaign in order to stabilise the workforce, KLP actively reviewed their caseloads to identify potential candidates for the Health Care Sector and referred numerous people directly into the service to apply for vacancies and as a result 5 people are now in employment due to this support”

Selina Doyle, CEO of St Patricks

Further Training          SICAP continues to support St Patricks with ‘upskilling’ of workers in mandatory training in Manual Handling and Patient Handling.  Trainers have been sourced to deliver the practical assessment element of training from behind a glass screen to 36 staff.

All staff participating will be supported with one-to-one applications for training and remote follow up supports in the future.