Hello everyone, and welcome to my first blog of 2022. 

I’m sure you will all be aware of the tough times we’ve had to endure in the care sector in recent times.  It’s almost two years since we were first made aware of Covid, and have, during that time, had to adapt to all it of its repercussions. 

For me, this is a time to reflect, but also, and perhaps more importantly, to look to the future. 

I make no apologies for previously highlighting all the difficulties our residents, their families and our staff have had to endure.  It is a fact that we were all let down by those in authority, who could, and should, have adapted more quickly themselves. My more recent blogs have made these points quite clearly. 

However, my reflection right now is more focused on the amazing resilience of everyone connected with our two lovely care homes… and I mean everyone.  Residents have had to change their routines, miss out on the more social side of things and most crucially sacrifice contact with their loved ones. Their families have had to make similar sacrifices along with them.  

I also want to give a huge shout out, and a big thank you, to the marvellous staff at Three Corners and Hill House. They have been extraordinary in their selflessness. It has shown me, and more importantly our residents, that they view their work as a vocation of care and duty. They perform so much more than their job description demands, going out of their way to put the care and needs of our residents first, whatever challenges they have had to face along the way. 

It also should serve as reminder to us all, that those who work in care, and more widely those who look after our health and wellbeing, ought to be recognised by our wider society. Remember when we stood outside of our doors to give applause to the NHS staff, well I think we ought to take a moment to do the same for all the care workers up and down the land, who have battled though all Covid has thrown at them… and still do. 

One sector of our team who I don’t want to be overlooked are our tremendous kitchen staff. Not only have they had to deal with Covid issues but also various problems with supply and food chain issues after Brexit.  Given everything that has happened, they have done such a great job in keeping up the values and ethos of providing healthy fresh meals for everyone in our homes. I’m also proud of the progression of our assistant practitioner staff, who are doing so well, and our sponsorship program is also going strong.  

Looking forward, there is new growth on the horizon, and new rules soon to come in regarding increased visiting access. It also looks like we may finally have the opportunity to return to a more rounded and fuller social calendar for our residents. 

I say ‘new growth’ because the plan is for two more homes to come under our auspices soon. More on that in my next blog perhaps but something positive for the future.  We have a few exciting ideas in the pipeline actually, one of which is to look at the prospect of providing ‘a home by the sea’ and ‘a home on the moors’ as an opportunity for people to have a break from their normal routines… a little ‘holiday’ if you like. Again, more about this later, and we’ll see if we can make it happen. 

On a more personal note, I had a lovely exchange from a care provider colleague recently, where I was told I was a good look for what the future of care homes should be, and an example in driving the industry forward towards much needed transformation. That meant a lot to me, as this is my passion and I want to do all I can to make the care of our elderly and vulnerable as good as it can be. 

So, lets end on that positive note for now. I know we haven’t won the war with Covid yet, and it may well throw all sorts at us again, but it’s shown me that we always strive to be the best we can. 

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