The SickKids CCMH Learning Institute team was the recipient of a SickKids Learning Institute Award of Excellence earlier this month.
At an online ceremony, the team was recognized for their outstanding work in pivoting to a virtual model starting last spring when COVID-19 made it impossible for in-person workshops to be held at the Maitland site.
Despite working within a whole new model, the team managed to grow their program offerings in the 2020/21 fiscal year by 25 per cent and increase participation rates by 92 per cent. The Institute has trained over 4,500 professionals so far during a pandemic.
Key to their success is the team’s ability to be open to change and help each other out, says Alice Wright, Director of the Institute.
“The team members supported one another with a tremendous amount of respect and empathy as they all learned how to pivot to being an online training provider,” says Wright, who nominated the team for the award. “Each team member has been respectful of each other’s skills and capacity, and has offered to step up in times of need.”
The change in delivery format meant rethinking every aspect of the business. The team had to learn how to use a videoconferencing platform and then train presenters on how to shape their content to best fit this new platform. From a marketing perspective, because programs were no longer onsite, they could be marketed far beyond their local regular audience, expanding both their numbers and their reach. The team also learned a new registration system for participants this year.
With so many required operational changes, individual job roles and responsibilities came secondary to ensuring the continued support and ongoing programming for the mental health learning community.
“Each team member proved once again why the SickKids CCMH LI team is unparalleled in its commitment to doing whatever it takes to offer quality professional development opportunities that support this community,” says Wright.
Congratulations to the team members: Jane Kitchen, Lisa Phillip, Tessa Phillip, Lisa Saunders, Mary Anne Van Rooyen, and Rose-Marie Washington.