Final weeks to apply for next innovator training intake

People working in aged care are encouraged to apply for free innovator training.

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People working in aged care who are passionate about improving services and have identified a problem in their workplace to solve are encouraged to apply for free innovator training.

Applications for the fourth round of Aged Care Research & Industry Innovation’s Innovator Training Program close in just under a month. The ITP supports participants to implement an evidence-based solution appropriate to their local setting and organisation, and organisations with funding to help cover staffing costs.

The free training involves self-directed online learning modules and workshops supported by expert ARIIA staff, who provide participants with tailored support alongside their dedicated sponsor from the workplace.

Participants learn skills in critical thinking, knowledge translation, innovation, implementation, project management and evaluation. They leave the course with a solution to the problem they have identified, a project plan and a pitch to present to stakeholders.

Managers are also called upon to encourage their staff to apply to offer professional development opportunities while solving organisational problems. Organisations will receive financial support of $2,000 per participant to contribute to staffing costs, and multiple staff can apply.

Previous participants implementing projects, winning grants

Previous participants are already implementing changes in their own organisations, a spokesperson for ARIIA told Community Care Review. “Many have also progressed to the Aged Care Partnering Program to build partnerships to strengthen their projects and for possible future grant applications. Of the ARIIA grants awarded in Round 1, three of the grants were awarded to ITP participants.”

The first three rounds have attracted applicants from across the aged care sector with participants ranging from service delivery managers to frontline care and lifestyle staff in both residential and community settings, and from metropolitan, rural and remote areas, said a spokesperson for ARIIA.

ARIIA research and workforce capability director Sue Gordon said the program empowered the workforce to make changes supported by evidence.

Sue Gordon

“Discussions with aged care sector organisations have revealed they are recognising ARIIA as providing valuable opportunities and support to enable them to make positive changes from within,” Professor Gordon told CCR.

“We have received some great feedback from participants in the Innovator Training Program, with favourable comments about it being a useful and highly practical program that provides the opportunity to learn skills they otherwise wouldn’t gain in their roles,” she said.

Previous participants include aged care physiotherapist Alanna, who took part in the first ITP round in May 2022. The challenge she wanted to address was around allied health professionals not being embedded into models of service delivery and residential aged care in her organisation.

“The ITP really helped me to refine my problem, and find and adapt evidence and inform the solution,” she said in a video testimonial. “The absolute best thing about the ITP was the support to work through my project planning in a way that built my skills and knowledge through formal learning opportunities. It allowed me to implement new learning immediately and allowed me to challenge my perspective in a safe way through formal mentoring.”

Alanna – who recommends the program to others working in aged care – has received support to implement her solution. “I’m so excited because my project has been approved and granted internal funding for a project officer to further pilot and do a strong case to embed allied health into aged care. I’m looking forward to ARIIA grants in 2023.” See more on Alanna’s experience here:

Round 4 applications of the Innovator Training Program opened 10 October 2022 and close 13 January 2023. Successful applicants will be advised 23 January, and training commences 30 January.

Find out more and apply for Innovator Training Program

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Tags: ARIIA, Dr Sue Gordon,

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