75 students from Calderdale and Kirklees Secondary Schools took part in an exciting skills initiative designed to promote career opportunities in the health and care sector. Funded by Health Education England and organized by the Ahead Partnership, the ‘Let’s Talk Health and Care Experience Day’ has been designed to help young people understand the different career roles and opportunities on offer and address future skills gaps.
The latest initiative allowed students from Honley High School, Netherhall High School and North Huddersfield Trust School to meet in person professionals working in health and care from the School of Human and Health Sciences at the University of Huddersfield ; Kirklee GCC; Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust; and Kirklees College and learn more about their professional roles. Students participated in a variety of interactive activities and events, such as workshops, lectures, speed networking, employer engagement and an interactive “Family Fortunes” style game.
This flagship event is part of the Kirklees and Calderdale Health and Care Pathways Project which aims to develop young people’s understanding of opportunities within the sector, supporting young people’s increased interest in health and aftercare jobs. the pandemic – for example an Engineering UK survey saw almost a quarter of 11-19 year olds say they were more likely to pursue a career in the healthcare sector since the coronavirus outbreak.
The event demonstrates Ahead Partnership’s continued focus on the health and care sector, having run two years of highly successful youth activities alongside partners in Calderdale and Kirklees in 2020 and 2021. Ahead Partnership is working also with C&K Careers on program delivery.
Stephanie Burras CBE, Managing Director of Ahead Partnership, said:
“Improving understanding of employment opportunities in health and care is extremely important as we seek to engage, inspire and upskill the next generation of healthcare professionals. The ‘Let’s Talk Health and Care’ day proved to be hugely popular and brought together a range of expert Calderdale and Kirklees partners to impart their knowledge and ensure we develop the skills needed to fill the job opportunities of tomorrow. »
“Health and care is one of the key areas of focus for Ahead Partnership as one of the high growth and in demand sectors in West Yorkshire. The past two years have taught us how important it is to showcase careers in these fields and give young people the opportunity to meet role models, and seeing the positive response from students has been fantastic.
Steve Brennan, Kirklees Place Program Manager for the Kirklees Health and Care System, said:
“We know how many incredible opportunities there are for young people in health and care. It is therefore fantastic that this event allowed students to learn more and meet some of the inspiring people who are already working in the regional sector.
“In turn, this will help us ensure that we can provide the candidates needed to fill important roles in the future, as skill demands continue to evolve.”
Professor Nick Hardiker, Acting Dean of the School of Humanities and Health Sciences at the University of Huddersfieldmentioned:
“This initiative showcases the benefits of collaboration between public and private sector organizations. A “whole system” approach is needed to address potential skills gaps and ensure a diverse and inclusive sector for the future. Our role in this respect is to arouse the interest of the younger generations and ensure that they understand the skills suitable for the health and care system of tomorrow.
Future roles for young people include a variety of fulfilling careers within NHS Trusts and other healthcare and care providers. Among attendees, the number of students interested in a career in the sector increased from 49% before the event to 82% after the event.
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