The skill-sharing project at the Fields has come to an end. This week I gave the staff their certificates, which will go towards their continuing professional development record. Five staff members attended all of the training, along with other staff members who were involved when their shift patterns would allow. I have been delighted with the enthusiasm and willingness to get involved that the staff have shown. I am really excited about the next stage in the project, where over the coming weeks and months the staff will start to practice and hone the skills they have learned over the six weeks.
I will return to the group in three months to evaluate the effectiveness of this six weeks of skill-sharing, and offer further support if requested. The staff also know that I am very happy for them to approach me in the meantime if they have any questions or requests for resources. This is possible because I work at the Fields for one day each week, and something that is not always the case on international projects.
Initial feedback from the staff via questionnaires has been very positive. In the music group, staff members noticed, ‘ Seeing service users join in activities in a way that they usually wouldn’t’, ‘improved confidence’ and ‘[improved] social skills’. The staff felt they had learned, ‘new ways of interacting with service users using music’ and ‘different ways to communicate through music’.
I will keep you posted when the time comes to follow up in a few months time!