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CBIL Innovative Training Forum Pairs Residents with Employees at Retirement Community

May 03, 2011

CBIL workshop at The Sarah Community  
St. Louis Community College's Center for Business, Industry and
Labor recently conducted an internal business communications
forum for The Sarah Community.

St. Louis Community College’s Center for Business, Industry and Labor (CBIL) recently partnered with The Sarah Community to conduct an internal business communications training forum supported by a grant from the Daughters of Charity. 

 

The Sarah Community (TSC) is located on the campus of SSM DePaul Health Care and provides a continuum of care for older adults in a comfortable and nurturing environment. It is sponsored by five Catholic religious congregations of women – the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, the Franciscan Sisters of Mary, the Religious of the Sacred Heart, the School Sisters of Notre Dame and the Sisters of Loretto.

 

Anna House, the nursing home of TSC, recently was named as one of the 18 best nursing homes in the country from among 15,500 surveyed by U.S. News and World Report's 2011 prestigious Nursing Home Honor Roll. It’s that same passion for exemplary service that fueled the quest for this innovative learning environment benefiting both residents and employees.

 

“We felt it would be extremely beneficial to build on the spirit of collaboration in relationships with staff, residents and their families through a program that would enhance lifelong development and holistic growth of the individuals,” said Ron Mantia, TSC executive director.

 

TSC worked with CBIL to pair residents and employee managers in this highly interactive communications training workshops that focused on written communications skills. These one-hour classes were held from January through March. Groups of four, which included two resident coaches and two employee participants, worked together during the workshops. 

 

“Drawing from the knowledge and vitality of the residents to encourage and support supervisors while building relationships between the two groups not only supports TCS’s core values, but also is critical to the overall success of the training,” said Tim Baldwin, CBIL’s workshop facilitator.   

 

The majority of the 12 volunteer coaches were Sisters from various religious congregations whose lives have been spent in service in education, healthcare or other areas of ministry, along with lay residents from business and community backgrounds. The students were supervisors from nursing, food service and administration at TSC.

 

Participants said they gained insight from the residents’ knowledge and helpful hints, and the resident coaches learned of challenges TSC employees face. Supervisors noted they are writing in a more concise, clear, purposeful, business-like manner.

 

“While it is too early to determine the overall impact this short-term training has had, there has been some immediate improvement noted in written documents at TSC,” said Kathie Chambers, CBIL senior project manager. “We believe that other retirement communities could benefit by involving savvy residents with employees who may have skills gaps, such as TSC has done.”

 

For more information on this course or other on-site training sessions, contact Chambers at 314-539-5309 or kchambers@stlcc.edu.