Caring Homes Group and Royal College of Nursing sign National Learning Agreement

August 5, 2019

Caring Homes Group, as one of the UK’s largest industry leading care home providers, will be working in partnership with the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), to promote and support lifelong learning for its nursing colleagues.

The learning agreement, which has been signed by both parties, provides a framework for the RCN and Caring Homes Group to work together to provide ongoing training and development for RCN members and other colleagues working through Caring Homes Group, both employed and agency staff.

The national agreement, which is the second of its kind for the RCN, also outlines the crucial role RCN learning representatives play in promoting learning and development. It will support the creation of new learning representative (reps) roles in Caring Homes’ homes and services across the UK. As of the end of July 2019 14 RCN learning representatives have been recruited, so far.

RCN National Officer Irene Murray said:

“Sometimes it has been hard for our members in the social care sector to take full advantage of the services the RCN offers because we didn’t have enough representatives in place – services such as career development or well-being support. This agreement gives us the chance to really support our members in the social care sector and make sure we have a base of representatives in place. This agreement means our learning reps know what to expect and formalises that relationship so they can work in partnership with their employer, sitting on relevant groups or committees.

“The RCN has a huge amount to offer as a professional body and our learning reps have access to a wealth of resources to help support training and development in their workplace, which in turn has a positive impact on patient care.”

Nurse Jandryle Trondillo is currently undertaking training to become an RCN learning rep and said:

“I’m passionate about learning and am already involved in supporting my colleagues with training. This is a great opportunity to build on that and give better support by incorporating what the RCN has to offer.”

Training lead for Caring Homes Group and RCN Learning Representative Jagdeep Bahra said:

“I work across five regions supporting colleagues from all levels of the business with training so becoming an RCN learning rep seemed like a natural progression. We have significant numbers of nursing staff joining us from overseas so this will help me to better support them with their nursing journey.”

Caring Homes Group is made up of Caring Homes, one of the most highly respected residential and nursing care home providers in the UK, and Consensus, which provides support and accommodation for people with learning disabilities and additional complex needs. The group has more than 5,700 employees including 630 nurses and nursing support workers.

Tracey Humphreys, Clinical Training Manager, Caring Homes Group, and RCN Learning Representative said:

“The company I used to work for had a learning agreement with the RCN and I decided to become a learning rep. I’ve been a rep for over a year and the training’s very good and has really benefited my own development. A learning agreement helps signpost people to the right training and helps colleagues with any further training and development. I’d seen the benefits of being in a learning agreement with the RCN so, in my role as Clinical Training Manager, it was something I really wanted Caring Homes to consider and I saw lots of potential in an agreement. It’s a further example of Caring Homes Group’s commitment to the learning and development of our people, and it shows our residents that we care. “

Liz Willis, Director of Learning & Organisational Development, Caring Homes Group, said:

“This is a quality measure for us, and just as we have agreements with other key groups, our agreement with the RCN is a quality measure. It’s a stamp of quality not just for our nurses and healthcare assistants, but also for the families and individuals we care for and support, because it shows we provide a high-quality service, and invest in the standard of our skilled colleagues. Learning is a continuous, lifelong experience-based pursuit that Caring Homes Group heavily invests in. You can’t stand still – you need to continuously improve. There’s no reason for our colleagues not to think about becoming a learning rep.”
The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) is the voice of nursing across the UK and is the largest professional union of nursing staff in the world. The RCN promotes the interest of nurses and patients on a wide range of issues and helps shape healthcare policy by working closely with the UK Government and other national and international institutions, trade unions, professional bodies and voluntary organisations.