Talented care staff from Belong villages were celebrated at the Star Awards 2014. The annual awards celebrate the care provider’s people and volunteers for their extraordinary contributions to the lives of customers at Belong villages across the North West.
The awards were announced in a ceremony at the Mere Golf Resort and Spa in Knutsford, which also included the presentation of a range of professional care industry qualifications. Staff from the five Belong villages, including the recently opened Belong Warrington, were nominated by village residents and their relatives, co-workers and members of the wider community.
Senior Support Worker at Belong Crewe, Jessica Butler, won ‘Care Professional of the Year’, impressing the panel of independent judges with “maturity way beyond her years”.
Belong Admiral Nurse, Caroline Clifton, who gives families of Belong customers specialist dementia support and advice, won ‘Newcomer of the Year’. Judges praised the way that she shares best practice with staff and seeks to continually improve dementia services in the village.
Belong Crewe Front of House Manager, Hayley Nicholls, won the ‘Leader of the Year’ award. Judges described her as “Very passionate about her role and improving the lives of people that use the service.”
Administrator at Belong Crewe, Kimberley Steele, won ‘Support Services Worker of the Year’. Judges said she is “Amazingly enthusiastic. Her enthusiasm shone through when we met her.”
Roland Horrocks, a volunteer at community care village Belong Atherton, won ‘Volunteer of the Year’. Roland, who has volunteered at Belong Atherton since May 2013, was singled out by judges not only for the contribution that he makes to residents of the care village, but also his gratitude for the positive effect that volunteering has on his life.
Staff from the Belong Atherton Bistro won ‘Belong Team of the Year’, for the way that their excellent teamwork contributes to the success of Belong Atherton as a whole.
Marie Calderbank, Experience Coordinator at Belong Wigan, won the ‘Outstanding Achievement’ for her work. Judges said: “Marie has a wonderful objective to make Platt Bridge into a dementia friendly environment. She lives and breathes the values of Belong and has the ability and enthusiasm to carry ideas through to fruition.”
Practice Development Facilitator, Michelle Jones, from Belong Warrington, won ‘Coach/Mentor of the Year’. Judges noted that she has “a real understanding of people’s different learning styles and abilities, and how to get the best out of them.”
Over 100 other members of staff from Belong were also awarded professional qualifications at the Star Awards, including diplomas and apprenticeships in adult health and social care, certificates in best practice in dementia care and certificates in mental health awareness. The highly respected, professional qualifications were mainly achieved through the West Cheshire College.
Phil Orton, Head of People for Belong, said of the awards: “It is only because of the dedication and hard work of the tremendous team of staff at Belong that we are able to offer such exceptional levels of care to our customers. Through the annual star awards, we formally acknowledge this hard work and express our thanks for the care and commitment shown to the people living in Belong villages.
“The Star Awards are also an opportunity to spotlight the ongoing staff training and development at Belong, as demonstrated by the number of staff tirelessly working to learn new skills and achieve formal qualifications, in the care profession and related fields such as catering and management.”
The event was made possible thanks to the sponsors who generously support the Star Awards. This year’s Gold Sponsors were CLC Contractors Ltd., Bates Office Supplies, Search recruitment, Collective Purchasing, and Care Shop.