30 Sep My Heart is Here
Over the last couple of years care homes have rarely left the news but taking a look behind the headlines we meet some of the people working in our charity to find out about their own journeys and diverse experiences.
Lilian Faithfull Care employs over 400 people across their five care homes and two day care hubs. Some staff come with a long and rich experience of care, others come to the charity straight from school or wanting a career change, but as we find out, whatever their role, it is the people that they help care for which makes their jobs so rewarding.
Sarah started working after her children have grown up and had previously worked as a hairdresser and in retail, but she explains that it was when she joined the care team at Faithfull House that “I became me”.
“When I started at Faithfull House the staff welcomed me in and that really helped me to settle. I absolutely loved it. It’s like a real home here – it’s not institutionalised at all.”
It was shortly after she started that Sarah realised how much she was also gaining from her caring role, “As much as we give, the residents give back to us too.” “It’s so special to see happy and relaxed residents and be able to give them their dignity.”
Sarah has now been promoted to Senior Carer;
“It’s great teamwork here – we’re like a family, I wouldn’t have got through Covid pandemic without them. My heart is here.”
Paula is Activities Coordinator at St Faith’s Nursing Home. She started at the home five years ago as a carer but hasn’t always worked in the sector, “ I was a beauty therapist for many years in Portugal before I came to the UK.” It was then she started to work in care;“I learnt so much in my first year as a carer,”.
“I enjoy my job as it is different everyday, there are new experiences and opportunities to learn all the time.” Paula particularly enjoys working with people with dementia “I enjoy the time we spend talking or singing, I enjoy seeing how much they remember about music, the lyrics; the things they don’t forget.”
Xaviour has worked at Resthaven for over 4 years a carer. He values the continuity of working within a care home because of the understanding he builds up with the residents. “I like looking after older people, you learn from the residents. They know me, we know each other and everyone’s routines. Their dignity and privacy is very important.”
Clark started as Catering Assistant nearly 4 years ago;
“One of the best parts about it was that I went round the home making drinks and meeting the residents. I was brought up respecting older people and I have always enjoyed listening to their stories”.
Whilst at Royal Court Clark successfully completed his Level 3 in Catering during lockdown. Soon after a job came up as a Chef, “I wasn’t sure whether to apply, as I didn’t know if I was ready or not, but the staff were really supportive and encouraging.” As Chef, Clark still particularly enjoys it when he does have time with the residents “I like to go round the home and see their faces; I ask them about my cooking and we have a laugh!.”