Hamelhuys, located in Groningen NL, is a walk-in consultation centre for cancer patients and their families. These consultation centres work with volunteers, are not-for-profit and depend financially on donations and sponsors.
This was the environment where an Open Badge pilot started, with the following characteristics:
- Badges are based on a existing competency standard,
- they are assessed with an existing assessment method,
- the designed badges will be used as widely as possible (not only locally).
All to reach a high level of “recognisability” of the end product. Next to that, Josje Hamel (the director of Hamelhuys who tells us: “we are volunteers but no amateurs”) also saw use for them as “role builder”, helping within her plan to build a professional organisation. We started basing the role of “Hospitality person” on standard learning outcomes, described in the Dutch national qualification structure. They were divided (“badged”) into seven groups of competencies. For each group a badge was designed. like “Handling a crisis”, “Reporting” or “Cooperating”.
These badges are publicized on the Hamelhuys website, so potential volunteers can read what they can learn here. Badges are earned and awarded in a combination of peer learning, peer assessment and classic job evaluation interviews.
Another role, that of “Buddy”, will very soon be “badged”. Both roles will overlap partly, concerning the needed badges, but clearly some new badges will be designed for this new role too.
So in this way Open Badges are used to visualize what is needed in the job framework of an organisation.
The pilot is still running, if the outcomes will be as we hope, the experiences in the pilot will be used on a much larger scale. We hope to report back on that in a later stage!
Visit website: http://www.hamelhuys.nl/