May 17, 2018 | News

Reprinted from County of Renfrew News

RENFREW, ON: A critical shortage of Personal Support Workers (PSW) in Renfrew has led to a partnership between Algonquin College and the County of Renfrew to deliver a PSW program at Bonnechere Manor. The program will begin in January of 2019 and will be solely delivered at the long-term care home, providing students with an exceptional opportunity to learn within one of the largest health care settings in the county.

Bonnechere Manor’s Director of Long-Term Care, Shelley Sheedy, says it’s an exciting partnership, particularly for students. “Immersion in our home’s setting will ensure the students acquire the values required to work in a long-term care environment. Our residents and staff are very familiar with having Algonquin students on site and welcome this more integrated partnership,” says Sheedy.

Over the past several months, Bonnechere Manor as well as other health care providers in the region, have had difficulty filling Personal Support Worker positions. An aging population has put a lot of pressure on the health care system and PSW’s are on the front line in providing support services to the elderly and adults who need personal care.

Algonquin College’s Chair of Health and Community Studies, Megan Conway, says the College’s top priority is to create programming opportunities that meet the demands of the labour market. “In this situation we have a health care partner that is struggling to fill vacancies for Personal Support Workers and is willing to make space available to the college to deliver a program. This is a great example of a collaborative learning model that benefits the employer, students and the college. We are very pleased to offer this program in Renfrew where the need for highly trained PSW’s is great and currently unmet.”

Elected officials with the County of Renfrew are highly supportive of the partnership. County Warden Jennifer Murphy calls it a proactive step that “Supports Bonnechere Manor’s longer-range PSW recruitment plan, adding it also helps the many other health care organizations that rely on PSW’s as the backbone of their health care teams.”

Bonnechere Manor is a 180 bed long-term care home that has been operating in Renfrew since 1958. The Home provides 24 hour nursing care, accommodations, meals, physiotherapy programs and a variety of social and recreational activities for its residents.

Algonquin College has been operating since 1967 and offers 21 full-time programs at its Pembroke Campus. The College delivers several health care programs including Personal Support Worker, Practical Nursing and the Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Over the years, students in these programs have benefitted from clinical placements provided at several health care facilities including Bonnechere Manor.

For more information, visit our website at or call:

Shelley Sheedy, Director of Long-Term Care, 613 433-8307
Michael Barber, Media Relations/Grants Coordinator, 613-735-7288

Algonquin College – Personal Support Worker Program – Bonnechere Manor Official Announcement