Introducing Our New "Care Companion for Seniors" Program
SUDBURY, ONTARIO – Spark Employment Services and Goshenite Seniors Services Inc. announced today the official launch of their Care Companion for Seniors program, a new initiative aimed at alleviating Ontario’s health care crisis while improving the health, well-being, and independence of seniors.
The Care Companion for Seniors program will allow individuals wanting to gain entry into the labour market, or those currently employed in the field of long-term care, retirement living or community, an opportunity to gain the skills and experience needed to be successful care companions to older adults. Participants in the project will benefit from 4 weeks of training and a 2-week work placement delivered by experienced instructors who either have worked or are currently working with older adults.
Additionally, the program will allow Spark to develop new partnerships and create innovative training solutions to improve our health care system. One of the new partners is Goshenite Seniors Services Inc., and they currently have employers waiting to hire, as well as employees wanting to enhance their skills.
“Our health care system has been in crisis for a long time as we don’t have enough health care professionals to address the shortage of workers in long term care homes, retirement residences and the community,” said Nicole Blais, President of Goshenite Seniors Services Inc. “We must think out of the box in order to find solutions to address these ongoing staff shortages. With support from Minister McNaughton, the Care Companion for Seniors program will assist families in supporting their ageing parents with outings, socialization, and many other activities of daily living, as well as to assist Personal Support Workers (PSWs) with their workload.”
Care Companion for Seniors will help alleviate the health-care crisis by addressing the labour shortage, specifically the PSW shortage, and reduce the administrative burden of human resourcing and worker retention in the health care field, specifically relating to older adults/seniors.
“As Ontario’s population continues to age, it is estimated we will need an additional 50,000 healthcare workers over the next three years,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “That’s why our government is investing in win-win programs like Care Companion for Seniors, which connect job seekers in Sudbury with rewarding work supporting seniors in the community.”
The employment skills and work experience gained from this program will benefit both new and existing employees, instilling job satisfaction and confidence in their skills, leading to enhanced staff retention. In turn, this will contribute to capacity building for employers and higher client/patient satisfaction.
“Our main goal for this program is to build a resilient and confident labour workforce who will play a critical role in addressing current health care labour market shortages,” said Chantal Makela, Chief Executive Officer at Spark Employment Services. “By creating a new role in health care services provided to our senior population, we are addressing an urgent need and alleviating the pressure on the health care system.”