CARE Essentials Course

Course dates for 2021 are coming soon with registrations opening in 2021.

The Volunteers CARE Essentials Course is a basic introduction to the general scope of Christian pastoral care. It is an eight-session course designed for use in congregations, faith communities or care facilities. The course is the beginning step on the pathway to more specialised pastoral care volunteering in various Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod chaplaincy settings.

This course includes an exploration of what pastoral care entails and how we can define it, examines why we are involved in pastoral care, and introduces some foundational skills needed to get started as a pastoral carer.

This session will cover:

  • What am I doing here?
  • What is pastoral care?
  • Why do we care?

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Give a simple definition of pastoral care.
  • Be introduced to some Biblical and theological underpinnings for pastoral care.
  • Start reflecting on why you want to be involved in pastoral care.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Be made aware of the importance of respect and confidentiality in pastoral care.
  • Be introduced to some basic pastoral care ethics.
  • Understand the importance of and processes involved with referring on to your mentor.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Be introduced to the concept of active listening and some of the skills involved.
  • Be introduced to some basic questioning techniques.
  • Be aware of some aspects of verbal and non-verbal communication.
  • Practise the skills you have been learning.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Be introduced to some ways of establishing rapport with a care seeker.
  • Revise, expand on and practice questioning skills.
  • Be reminded of processes for referral and follow-up, reporting to our mentors, debriefing and releasing pastoral encounters.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Be familiar with some of the most commonly used language around grief and loss.
  • Be aware of some processes that can be evident in a person who is mourning.
  • Be aware of the concept of stages of grief.
  • Be aware of some of the characteristics of ‘companioning’.
  • Recognise that some special cases may require further training or referral.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Outline what theology means to you.
  • Be aware of the Wesleyan Quadrilateral and sources of theology.
  • Be introduced to a process of theological reflection known as the Pastoral Cycle.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Be aware of a model of human development.
  • Be introduced to some aspects of the diversity of the human condition including disability, common mental health problems and dementia.
  • Be aware of the nature of palliative care.

By the end of this session you will be able to:

  • Recognise some symptoms of stress and burnout.
  • Discuss and, if necessary, implement some preventative measures we all need to take, in order to maintain balance in our lives.
  • Pray for God’s guidance for our future work in pastoral care.