Remaining Connected To Our Young People Is Key
WA Field Officer and Educator, Bianca Whife, is going from strength to strength as she mentors and educates trainees and students across three states to support the organisation.
We caught up with Bianca to have a chat about the amazing work she is doing and the positives that have come out of the new ways she is adapting to the current situation.
How has your role changed since the Covid-19 situation?
I am still undertaking my WA Field Officer and Educator role; however, everything is now completely virtual. I am checking in with all my trainees either through text, phone call or zoom once a week. I think in a time like these young people really need all the support they can get.
In my role as Educator, all my classes have been moved to online zoom sessions. I have been really impressed with all my students. They are always engaged and have adapted well to this new method.
I am also currently undertaking Sport and Recreation Education for QLD, SA and WA and although I have never met (face to face) the QLD or SA students they have all been amazing in attending, participating and always staying on top of their units and zoom classes.
I try to change things up in most classes with study games and jokes. I never want the online classes to be boring or repetitive because that is when the students might disengage.
What are some of the things you are loving about these new challenges in your role?
It is forever changing –there is something new every day and I think it has really given us all a new perspective on how we can deliver education and how we can engage with our students in a new way.
I also feel for me it has created a really good connection and interaction with my trainees. I am speaking with and supporting them a lot more regularly and it has been really great for them to be able to lean on me, whether that’s with education, about work or maybe just a chat about life.
How has your relationship with trainees changed?
I think it has changed it for the better, like I have said, we have connected a lot more over the past month or so than I probably would have if this situation hadn’t occurred – if anything they might be sick of hearing my voice.
I have gained a lot of respect and trust in my trainees over the past month and admire how they have adapted– for young people change can be really hard and the majority have really embraced it.
Why do you think it is important for businesses to adapt during this time?
Everyone is in the same boat with COVID-19, yes everyone has a different story or change in work/life, but we are all getting through this together. I think businesses need to adapt to try and keep some sort of normality in their employees/businesses day to day life.
I know with AFL SportsReady we have done all we can to try and continue on as per normal and I really think all of our staff have done an amazing job of banding together and just running like clockwork.
What are some positive stories you have seen come out of the situation at AFL SportsReady?
As a national company I feel we are more connected than ever before. Although I may be in a unique situation working with three states, I have spoken to more staff around the country and developed
some really positive working relationships. We are all in this together and everyone is onboard to lend a hand when needed.
In regard to my trainees – so many!
Here in WA – I have several PE Assistant trainees running online challenges for the students whilst they were at home, now that WA is back to school, they are assisting to keep the PE Department running and making sure the students are following all the new guidelines.
QLD –I have a class of about 5 -6 girls working in Sport Departments who have all hit the ground running since school returned last week and they are still managing to attend my online zoom sessions – they’re so keen and mature in the way they have adapted.
We would like to give a big shout out to all our Field Officers and Educators who are working around the clock to support our trainees and students in the best way they can. If you or anyone you know is interested in doing a traineeship, register for our hot jobs newsletter here and keep up to date with our latest opportunities.
If your organisation is interested in our traineeship program, please click here.
DATE: 7th of May 2020
IMAGE: Bianca Whife
AUTHOR: Marissa Pagliarello