Encouraging and enabling young people to get involved with and understand the work of our hospital is important to us at Liverpool Women's. Many young people are amazed to discover the variety of careers available in the NHS. People tend to typically think about doctors, nurses, midwives, radiographers etc when they think about healthcare staff. To run NHS services we also need paramedics, dietitians, phlebotomists, IT experts, chefs, electricians, telephonists, podiatrists, clerical staff, chaplains, accountants, porters, drivers, scientists, plumbers, the list is endless!!
My professional background was in Human Resources Management and much of my earlier career on the Wirral was taken up with developing close links between health and education and supporting schools with career choices for students. As a Chief Executive I am still passionately committed to supporting links between health and education.
At Liverpool Women's we create a number of opportunities to work with young people. Our staff go out to local schools across Cheshire and Merseyside to share with them our great jobs and the fantastic experiences and job satisfaction we get from working in health services. This inspires lots of youngsters to consider health or social care careers. We provide opportunities for work experience, work taster sessions or pre-employment training, careers events and workshops on finding employment.
We work in partnership with Liverpool Education Authority supporting the Health and Well Being Lead for Schools.
We ran a competition with local primary schools to give our Baby Supalambana a make over and received over 1000 entries. Children really do have great imaginations. It was a great day when we invited the school children, their teachers and parents in to announce the winner.
We have also worked with local secondary schools and brought in a cohort of teenage boys to encourage them to think responsibly about contraception. Watching them wearing the 'pregnancy bellies' for a day was a sight to behold.
Our Specialist Midwife who supports teenage pregnancy holds regular 'Hit the ground crawling' sessions which are designed to support teenage fathers as they prepare for becoming a parent.
When we bring young people into the hospital to see behind the scenes, it is always fascinating for them: our genetics laboratory staff show them how we extract DNA, our consultants, nurses and midwives are always happy to share their stories of working in healthcare and our male nurses and our Consultant Midwife who is male, challenge traditional conceptions of career choices.
We have had local school choirs perform in our Main Reception area, this always brings a smile to the faces of our staff, patients and visitors.
An important part of our Public Health responsibilities at Liverpool Women's is about supporting young people to aspire to be the best they can.