Community Engagement and Service Learning Activities in the School of Nursing

During October 2011 the School of Nursing had a stakeholder meeting with various partners in Heidedal. Possible involvement with the different partners were identified and coordinated with the existing service learning modules. The rationale was to have a bigger impact in one community. Implementation of service learning projects in the Heidedal community started in 2012 and a follow up meeting with all stakeholders was planned for the second semester.

During April 2012 staff of the School of Nursing took part in the nationwide CHEER research initiative within the Health Sciences faculty. The CHEER group also accompanied the first-year nursing students to Heidedal for their project implementation.

Conferences attended

Various staff members attended conferences, namely:

  • Engaged Scholarship Workshop, Unisa: Ms D Coetzee.
  • Community Campus Partnership for Health Conference, Houston, USA and networking at the Appalachian State University, Boone, USA: Ms I Seale.
  • Congress in Gent: Ms I Seale.
  • Action Research for Community Engagement Workshop, UFS: Ms I Seale and Ms M Lesia.
  • NRF research project feedback (with the focus on non-profit organisations): Ielse Seale, Mandie Jacobs, Marie Prinsloo en Karen Venter.
Progress of the service learning module activities

Community Health

An assessment was done of children at the Reach community-based centre in Heidedal. One of the children with personal problems is currently assisted by a staff member. Focus groups with the parents were conducted, and data gathered from these discussions regarding their experience of the pre-school intervention will be analysed.

A need for training of the girls at Dr Blok High School regarding Sp's, contraception and other topics was identified. It was referred to the VRP224 module.

Nursing Education

Four groups of students completed their educational situation (needs) analysis at Reach, New Horizons and two Child Welfare safety houses. Implementation of “Health Care Worker” training will take place during the second semester.

New Horizons is currently going through a financial challenge. Students and staff involved with them assisted with advice and accompanied them to the Department of Health to help sort out their funds. The situation is still not sorted out, but will be followed up by the staff involved in the module.

Nursing Practical

Students completed a community survey in the Heidedal community. The surveys were presented and video recordings were made. The implementation took place at the Heide School in Heidedal and the community was invited.

Implementation of the patient-teaching tool will take place in the second semester. Presentations are held in the community.

Implementation of the wound care projects will take place in the second semester. The Wound Care students visited children with bedsores at the Tswellang School in order to identify patients that can be used in their case studies during the second semester.

Midwifery Practical

Home visits are done throughout the year where mothers are discharged six hours post-birth. Students visit the Heidedal and MUCPP Clinics, as well as the National and Pelonomi Hospitals to identify the mothers to be visited. Half of the student group completed their home visit placement in Heidedal and the broader Bloemfontein and Mangaung area.

New Modules

Two new service learning modules are planned to be piloted in 2013, namely Psychiatric Nursing in the undergraduate programme and Advanced Child Health Nursing.

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