Persona PersonAwards celebrate the best in social care


Staff and volunteers from Greater Manchester social care provider Persona saw their achievements celebrated at an annual awards ceremony.

The second annual PersonAwards took place at the Elizabethan Suite at Bury Town Hall and was a chance to come together and recognise the achievements of colleagues over the year.


Ten awards were presented including team of the year; young carer of the year; manager of the year; volunteer of the year and employee of the year.


Comedian Bill Woolland compered the event which was attended by Bury Mayor Cllr Dorothy Gunther and her consort Michael Gunther.


Award sponsors included Bury businesses Horsfield & Smith, Gunnercooke, Revel Continuing Care, Ainsworth & Parkinson, Tutor Doctor, Brand Idol, Safety Net, and Cuppaccinos Bistro, plus Bury Community Network, Annabelle’s Challenge and Unison.


Persona employees and volunteers provide a wide range of services and activities to customers at community centres and residential facilities across Bury. Persona took on responsibility for adult social care services from Bury Council in 2015 and its customers include older people, and people with physical and learning disabilities and dementia.


 Kat Sowden, Managing Director of Persona Care and Support, said: “Everything Persona has achieved in our first two years is down to the fantastic commitment and dedication of the Persona team.


“Our people are everything – they make Persona the fun and rewarding place it is to work and they make a difference every day to our customers. Whether it’s providing fun and stimulating activities in day centres, support services in people’s homes or respite stays, all our staff and volunteers give 100 per cent to those they care for.


“The PersonAwards are our annual opportunity to say thank you and to recognise the individuals and teams who have made a difference and gone the extra mile. The dedication and commitment they put into everything they do provides enriching experiences which help people to live independent and fulfilling lives. Every day I am proud of all of them and am constantly amazed by what they do.”

Winners in the 10 award categories were …


1. Team of the year: Pinfold Lane Day Centre. Staff were nominated by a number of customers and family members for their “caring attitude, compassion, patience and kindness”. Relatives told judges their loved ones who attended the centre were happier and that staff supported carers to take a much needed break from their role.

2. Young carer: Liam Shellard. Liam was nominated for the exceptional care and consideration he shows to customers and for helping to run a young person’s group and an art group.

3. Dignity award:  Sue Stockman. Sue impressed judges with her commitment and enthusiasm to her day job at Spurr House but also for her additional volunteering work to improve the centre’s garden areas.

4. Support service award: Lesley Barrass. Lesley has more than 30 years’ experience with Persona and before that the council and was commended for her incredible commitment to supporting the Persona team

5. Volunteer of the year: Christopher and Peter Bryant Hall. Christopher and Peter were awarded the volunteer of the year award for their efforts to create a sensory garden at the Bolton Road Day Service.

6. Learner of the year: Catrina Kay- day care assistant Catrina took the learner award for the understanding she has shown towards customer needs and her efforts to find new ways to improve their experience.

7. Innovation award: James Green, Angie Cooper, Chris Dawson and Alison Chappell. A team effort secured this award for a new project to help customers with learning disabilities to set up a new friendship social group. The group has allowed customers to pool their care hours, securing them more staff time and allowing them to enjoy trips out to the theatre, bowling and the zoo.

8. Making a difference to customers award: Mags Grainge and Janet Freeman. Mags and Janet went the extra mile to help a customer with learning disabilities who was struggling to manage at home. Their efforts included helping her to access much-needed medical treatment and were described in their nomination as “life-changing” for the customer.

9. Employee of the year: Juliet Goss. Juliet  works in the supported living team and impressed judges with her positive attitude and exceptional commitment to two customer households which required intensive support.

10.          Manager of the year: Lisa Beamer. Spurr House manager Lisa was described as a fantastic manager who always keeps her team’s spirits up. Judges noted her commitment to staff induction and training which ensures the best possible care for all Spurr House customers.


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