A chance for Norfolk's social care sector to shine!

Staff and service users at NANSA celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event

Staff and service users at NANSA celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event - Credit: NANSA

Norfolk's social care sector was celebrated like never before at the live, virtual Norfolk Care Awards 2021 event earlier this month.

A live virtual celebration of frontline social care workers and services took place on September 16 to recognise the innovation, collaboration and outstanding leadership that was needed to meet the tough challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event was hosted by Darren Eadie, former Norwich City footballer and mental health campaigner, and Claire Gilbert, director of Norfolk Care Awards. Darren said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure to host the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 and I am humbled by so many great success stories and inspirational people.” 

Darren Eadie and Claire Gilbert at the virtual Norfolk Care Awards

Ex Norwich City footballer and mental health campaigner Darren Eadie and Norfolk Care Awards director Claire Gilbert hosted the virtual celebration of the social care sector - Credit: Claire Gilbert

Eammon Holmes sent an incredible message supporting the social care workforce, and thanks were given by local news broadcasters, ex Norwich City football players and Jan Burns, chair of the National Dignity Council, who said: ‘Norfolk Care Awards give social care a chance to shine.” 

Tracy Wharvell, who co-directs the Norfolk Care Awards with Claire, said: “This was an opportunity to acknowledge and thank social care for putting others before themselves, caring for our loved ones , keeping them safe, ensuring we were connected when it was impossible to meet face to face, and being there in the hardest of times.” 

Claire added: “It was important to hear contributions and share good practice by showing Collaborative Care, Care Leadership and Innovative use of Digital. We also wanted to give the communities across Norfolk insight into what social care provides, and enable them to show their appreciation by voting for their Local Care Heroes. We broadcasted live from several care services, seeing residents partying as the Local Care Heroes were announced.” 

In recognition of the outstanding contribution of the social care sector, James Bullion, executive director of Adult Social Services at Norfolk County Council, announced the Harold Bodmer Outstanding Achievement Award was given this year to the whole of Norfolk’s social care workforce. 

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The organisers would like to thank the Norfolk Care Association and Norfolk County Council for working collaboratively to ensure the event was successful. In addition, several local businesses demonstrated their support for social care by sponsoring award categories; these were Birket LLP, Gordon Barber Funeral Homes, Foodcare Direct, and the University of East Anglia.  

Libby Ferris Flowers also showed their support with a beautiful flower arrangement for the set, as well as Deck Above with the balloons. 

LOCAL CARE HEROES

North Norfolk Care Hero Gavin Dinsdale with staff from Glendon House

North Norfolk Care Hero Gavin Dinsdale with staff from Glendon House - Credit: Glendon House

North Norfolk Care Hero is Gavin Dinsdale from Glendon House, Overstrand 

“When Gavin was shortlisted for this award, he was very humble and, being the kind compassionate person that he is, could not believe that he had been placed in the final,” said deputy manager Laura Lodge. “Gavin is so kind caring and compassionate, he goes about his daily work with a spring in his step. His colleagues, the residents and relatives hold Gavin in such high regard.” 

South Norfolk Local Care Hero Karen Claydon from Robert Kett Court 

South Norfolk Local Care Hero Karen Claydon from Robert Kett Court - Credit: Robert Kett Court 

South Norfolk Local Care Hero is Karen Claydon from Robert Kett Court, Wymondham 

“My colleagues and our great tenants make my work an absolute pleasure,” said Karen. “Despite the challenges posed during the pandemic we continued to have a lot of fun together, while providing the care and support our tenants deserve.  

“The award will be on display at Robert Kett Court and I hope it will serve as a reminder that we made it through and are coming out the other side with smiles still on our faces.” 

Norwich Local Care Hero Liliana Simionescu from Harriet Court

Norwich Local Care Hero Liliana Simionescu from Harriet Court - Credit: Harriet Court

Norwich Local Care Hero is Liliana Simionescu from Harriet Court, Norwich 

“I love my job and making a difference to the lives of the people we care for at Harriet Court, and being recognised for the work I do is very special,” said Liliana. “I am incredibly fortunate and grateful to be part of a great team and I could not do what I do without their support. 

“Thank you so much to everyone who voted for me in the awards and to Tracy High for nominating me.” 

Great Yarmouth and Waveney Local Care Hero The Lawns Housing with Care Scheme

Great Yarmouth and Waveney Local Care Hero The Lawns Housing with Care Scheme - Credit: The Lawns Housing with Care Scheme

Great Yarmouth and Waveney Local Care Hero is The Lawns Housing with Care Scheme, Great Yarmouth 

“We are all absolutely delighted to have won this prestigious award,” said Carole Nisbett, manager of The Lawns. “I’m very proud to be surrounded by such a great group of people here at The Lawns, who I believe are all local care heroes, going above and beyond during what has been an extremely challenging time. 

“A very big thank you to everyone who voted for us.” 

INNOVATIVE USE OF DIGITAL  

Service users at Assist Trust celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event

Service users at Assist Trust celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event - Credit: Assist Trust

Assist Trust, Norwich

“We are delighted to have been recognised and celebrated for excellent good practice here at the Assist Trust,” said Richard Ward, CEO. “Our staff have worked so hard over this difficult period and have shown great flexibility and creativity in response to a whole new set of circumstances. They deserve all the credit they get” 

Residents and staff at Crown Rest Home celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event

Residents and staff at Crown Rest Home celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event - Credit: Crown Rest Home

Crown Rest Home, Little Dunham

“The award has been a recognition of the outstanding resilience of my staff who have worked tirelessly under what has been the hardest and most challenging 18 months the social care industry has ever faced,” said Lindsey Wood, proprietor of The Crown Rest Home. “It highlights that through adversity there are still opportunities to innovate and improve the quality of life for others.” 

Staff and service users at NANSA celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event

Staff and service users at NANSA celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event - Credit: NANSA

NANSA, Norwich

“The national narrative throughout the pandemic has shown us all how incredibly dedicated and courageous the workforce is within the care sector,” said Leon Smith, CEO of Nansa. “I have been in awe of my colleagues throughout this period. I am so proud of the way in which they have continually adapted and taken advantage of technology; in the best interests of those we support.”  

CARE LEADER

Gordon Anderson from Cavell Healthcare 

"I am enormously proud of the determination, bravery and hard work of each and every member of the team,” said Gordon.   

“I firmly believe that the secret to our growth over the last year is a combination of meeting challenges head-on and adapting the business to overcome these, and supporting our outstanding team, so they can continue to flourish whilst undertaking their roles with confidence.” 

Sarah Manners, care leader at Laburnum Grove House, Thetford

“It has been a hard year for everyone who has worked in the care sector, so it is especially humbling to not only be nominated but to celebrate those who were also nominated across all the different categories,” said Sarah. 

“I am passionate about excellent care and I am very lucky to have a team that all feel the same. As a care leader, having a team that promote excellent care makes my job not only easier but more successful.” 

Ruth French from Stow Healthcare 

“It is incredibly special to be able to showcase the amazing work that we have been doing as a team during one of the toughest times the industry has ever faced,” said Ruth. “I am incredibly proud of all of my staff for their dedication to our residents during this time.  

“Although we were unable to meet in person, it was great to be able to come together virtually at these awards and hear all of the incredibly stories from across the county.” 

Care Leader Tom Lyons, managing director of Black Swan Group

Care Leader Tom Lyons, managing director of Black Swan Group - Credit: Black Swan Group

Tom Lyons, managing director of Black Swan Group 

“To be nominated is a huge honour, and I’m very grateful to my team who organised the submission whilst I was on annual leave – a truly lovely surprise upon my return. 

“Social care deserves to be recognised as the highly skilled work it is, and it is my privilege to be able to lead such an amazing team who provide top-quality care every day and ensure our residents have the best quality of life possible.” 

Sarah Lord from Extra Care Services, North Walsham

“They say a great team are only as a good as their leader, but I think that a great leader can only be great with an amazing team behind them, and my team at Extra Care truly are amazing individuals, said Sarah. 

“We have all laughed, cried and encouraged each other daily during the pandemic. I am so proud of them all and proud to be a care leader in Norfolk.” 

COLLABORATIVE CARE

Residents at Broadacres celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event

Residents at Broadacres celebrating during the Norfolk Care Awards 2021 virtual event - Credit: Broadacres

Broadacres, Barton Turf

“We worked so hard to provide residents with a sense of normality and keep their social lives busy, which in turn protected and promoted their well-being,” said Kim Lavery, general manager of Broadacres. 

“The staff are so proud to share their story. As the manager of Broadacres care home, I can’t express in words how proud I am of the amazing work the team have done and what a pleasure and inspiration they are to work alongside.” 

Norfolk and Suffolk Care Support, Training In Healthcare, Care Provider Quality Improvement Nurse, Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group, Norfolk County Council Integrated Commissioning Team 

“This training was all about continuing to deliver person-centred care ensuring that people were able to remain where they wanted for as long as possible,” said Christine Futter, chief operating officer of Norfolk and Suffolk Care Support.  

“Together, we designed this preventative training that enabled social care staff to communicate with confidence and show mutual respect across multi-disciplinary teams, using a shared language and understanding for the benefit of the person.” 

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