#GladtoCare Awareness Week is dedicated to celebrating those who work in the care sector, following an incredibly trying period for the industry.
The aim of #GladtoCare Awareness Week is to challenge the public’s perception of care, by shining a light on all of the incredible work that’s been done, and continues to be done, within the industry. We thought we would take the opportunity to catch up with one of our Development Coaches, Ann Jones, and find out how her career has changed over the years and why she is so dedicated to the care industry.
I have worked in the Adult Health and Social Care sector for over 35 years! I really couldn’t imagine doing anything else; my daughter and I had a pet sitting/ grooming business for a few years, and I worked in a local hotel, but I always ended up ‘caring’ for customers, in one way or another. When not caring for the service users, I enjoyed caring for staff, mostly by encouraging their learning and development. This would take the form of guiding them through their care certificates, helping with vocational qualifications or face to face training.
Having been a care Manager for ten years, I realised that a full-time position helping care and support staff and their leaders and managers, through their diplomas, was the perfect job for me. I was lucky enough to join Busy Bees in 2019. As a Development coach my role involves observing learners in their workplace, providing support and guidance by collecting evidence, assessing their abilities and enabling them to gain their desired qualifications. My apprentices want to learn and develop their skills and knowledge, for themselves and their service users, it’s not just ticking a box, and getting a certificate.
One of My learners, Daniel London, from Acorn Park School, has progressed very well since he started his level 2 apprenticeship in January 2019. He has been promoted from Support worker to Team Leader. Having passed his level 2 with a merit, he has applied to do his level 5 Leadership and Management apprenticeship course with us soon.
I have been especially proud of my learners over the last few months, because of the way they have supported their service users. Some have had coronavirus themselves, covered many shifts for others suffering with it, many have cared for the vulnerable who have been diagnosed with this scary disease. The carers have worked in uncomfortably warm conditions, in layers of personal protective equipment, repeatedly washing their hands and cleaning and disinfecting the environment.
Social isolation has affected us all differently, but my learners have gone the extra mile to keep peoples spirits up:
From Park House, Hitchin, Duty Managers Sara Greer, Susan Staines, Kristine Blazge and Estate Manager Leanne Jessett are level three diploma apprentices. Sara appeared on Radio Herts to talk about their endeavours, which include corridor bingo, a VE day cream tea, special Easter egg donations (courtesy of their local Waitrose), an art competition and all the staff having a bake off and delivering their cakes to homeowners.
From Bowles Court, Chippenham, Care and Support worker Tasha, a level 2 diploma apprentice, knows how much their homeowners love music and dance. She organised performances by the locations staff. Whilst the team perform on the terrace, the homeowners watch from their balconies or the garden, ensuring a good social distance. The Estate Manager, Emma Gray, said Tasha has been brilliant, planning the events, the homeowners look forward to the weekly performances.