Caring for the elderly inspires NZTC student

Caring for the elderly inspires NZTC student

Adrienne Foley with client Ron Crook

For NZTC Health and Wellbeing student Adrienne Foley, the people that she cares for are a constant inspiration. After working in roles in the mental health industry and administration, Adrienne finally found her fit when she landed a job at a rest home and realised that caring for the elderly was what she wanted to do. Now a homecare support worker, she takes pleasure in being able to help others and offer support to those in need. 

What made you decide to enrol in NZTC’s New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Advanced Support) (Level 4)? 
I decided to enrol at NZTC because it is important to upskill. The healthcare industry is changing, with providers requiring certified staff. It was also an incentive for the new pay scales that came into effect on 1 July. Starting this NZTC program has given me a new appreciation for the work I do. I genuinely love looking after those who require support and I enjoy helping those in need.

What has been your experience studying with NZTC so far?
I am thoroughly enjoying my studying experience. I am very impressed with everything so far. NZTC Online, the assessments – which are both challenging and educational – and the lecturers are fantastic. Studying online has been brilliant. NZTC Online is fantastic to navigate and everything you need is at your fingertips. You can communicate with lecturers and classmates through the discussion forum or eMessage and they are very helpful – this ensures that we have all the information needed to complete assessments. You feel as if you are in a classroom because you have so much support.

What does a typical work day look like for you? 
As a homecare support worker for VisionWest Baptist HomeCare, my job entails visiting clients in their homes and assisting them with daily tasks as per their care plan. My role varies on a day-to-day basis, which is what I like because I work with a variety of different illnesses, i.e. Parkinson’s disease, Rett syndrome, dementia etc. I also support families when their loved one passes on. We often visit clients for years and build a genuine relationship while remaining within the professional working boundaries.

What do you enjoy most about your role?
I absolutely enjoy interacting with clients and genuinely caring for those in need. I relish learning from my elderly clients, as they tell me stories of the days gone. What I enjoy the most is when a client smiles at me and being a part of their management plan and, a lot of the time, their recovery.

What support have you received from the college? 
I have received a huge amount of support. Communication is excellent, fast and efficient. My lecturers are brilliant and helpful. I went to the student tutorial, which was extremely beneficial and the lecturers have really helped me with referencing and any other questions I have. 

How will this qualification help you in your work?
This qualification has already helped me immensely. Being educated and understanding more about how I can improve my role as a homecare support worker not only benefits the client but the community, healthcare industry, client’s family, VisionWest and myself. It’s made me feel valued as a support worker and has helped me reassess how I work in the community.