Walk programme sees trainees experience hospital working life

By William O'Connor

Tallaght Hospital & WALK launched a new programme specifically for people with learning disabilities.

The new WALKways Tallaght Hospital programme will see 11 trainees join the Hospital and spend 11 months experiencing working life across the Hospital’s many different departments.

Walkways launch 25 September 2017 33

This programme is run as a partnership between Tallaght Hospital and WALK, a local community group involved in the education and training of young people with intellectual disabilities, across Leinster.

On Monday morning, a ceremony was held in the Hospitals Centre for Learning & Development, to formally launch the trainee programme.

This followed the completion of the Hospital’s induction programme by the trainees. The trainees were presented with their new staff ID by the Tallaght Hospital CEO David Slevin, Chairman Liam Dowdall as well as the CEO and Chairman of WALK Joe Mason & John Bourke.

Patrick Brennan a representative of the trainees planted a tree along with the CEO’s and Chairmen of both Tallaght Hospital & WALK, in a symbolic gesture to mark the launch of the new programme.

The 11 candidates were chosen over the summer in a special recruitment process.

They will each undertake three placements, lasting approximately 14 weeks, within various Hospital Departments including the Children’s Hospital, speech and language therapy, medical records, catering, portering and physiotherapy.

Within each department, they will be educated and provided with a range of work skills with a view to obtaining QQI level qualifications.  At the end of the programme, WALK will seek to place the trainees in paid employment with the assistance of a Business Support Network which will be set up to provide links into local industry. Each trainee will also be assigned to a Business Support Network member as a mentor in order to get job-ready.

Liam Dowdall, Chairman of Tallaght Hospital, said “This exciting new initiative is ideal for Tallaght Hospital which has long been engaged and active in the local community. I wish to extend a warm welcome and congratulations to our incoming trainees. I hope they have a very worthwhile and fulfilling experience here at the Hospital”.

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