On Friday 18th October, the Belfry Hotel, Nottingham provided a spectacular backdrop for the finals of the Great East Midlands Care Awards, where the nineteen category winners were announced.

The Great East Midlands Care Awards, supported by the Department of Health, are part of the Great British Care Awards, a series of regional awards which celebrates excellence in social care and pay tribute to those who work in the sector throughout England.  The awards are all inclusive, bringing together the statutory, independent and voluntary sectors, as well as unpaid carers; promoting joint working.

The Great East Midlands Care Awards have received nominations and support from all corners of the sector. Sector support includes the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), Skills for Care, Ceretas and the English Community Care Association.  Local Authority support and commercial organisations are also supporting the awards.  Care Talk magazine is the media partner.

There were a total of nineteen award categories available for nomination, which represent all areas of the care sector,whether it be older people or specialist services and from frontline staff such as care workers and care managers to people who have made an impact in other ways such as training, specialist care in areas such as dementia and innovation.

Nominations came in from all corners of the sector and region and successful candidates were invited for interview for infront of a panel of sector experts.  Thegala award evening started in style with a champagne reception, followed by a superb gourmet dinner and the awards presentation with TV personality and actor Martin Kemp and then dancing into the night.

Winners from the awards will be invited to attend the national finals for either the home care or care home sector which will take place in April and June 2014 at a prestigious venue in London.

The awards support a chosen charity; The Care Workers Charity is the registered charity for the Care Sector and are here to support current, former and retired care professionals, by providing assistance to relieve financial hardship or sickness.

Lisa Carr, Director of the Great British Care Awards said,

“We are delighted to be staging the Great East Midlands Care Awards for the third time. The care awards are going from strength to strength with this year’s regional events.  The support from sector partners has been overwhelming and the quality and sheer nominations has been astounding.

These awards recognise and pay tribute to the efforts and dedication of all those who work tirelessly to ensure that so many people are able to live independent lives in their own home. They are the perfect showcase to reflect on best practice in the social care sector. A sector where people truly dedicate themselves to their work and take pride in their achievements.

The people of the East Midlandsare incredibly fortunate to have such dedicated people caring for the vulnerable and elderly members of their communities. Congratulations to everyone this evening – everyone here is a winner!”

The winners of the Great East Midlands Care Awards, together with the judge’s comments are detailed below:


The Care Employer Award – Country Court Care


An excellent example of what a good employer should be. Their passion for their staff was outstanding and the fresh ideas they have implemented provides and exciting and positive environment to work in.



The Care Home Worker Award – Linda Cronin – Signature Senior Lifestyle


Linda is an emotive, caring and compassionate worker and it was easy for the judges to identify these qualities in her interview. The judges were able to identify her intrinsic qualities as demonstrating the skills and abilities of a highly competent care home worker



The Home Care Worker Award – James Spencer – Direct Health


James has natural insight into how to support individuals but impressed the judges by his personal commitment to further training to consolidate skills and improve practice. He also understands that to deliver life skills as well as qualifications.



The Care Newcomer Award – Joe Rumsey – Home Instead Senior Care


Joe impressed us greatly during his interview with his passion and drive. His determination to keep his customers at the centre of all interactions was evident throughout. Joe is a much welcome addition to the care sector and we wish him well for the future.


The Care Home Registered Manager Award – Shanci Matthew – Morton Grange


A very competent and driven manager who clearly demonstrated a real honest and genuine passion for her residents. The thirst for more knowledge clearly shone through making Shanci a well worthy winner!



The Home Care Registered Manager Award – Alison Young – Direct Health


Alison feels privileged to be working in homecare. She understands her role as a leader in motivating her team to achieve high quality care and enhanced quality of life outcomes for people who use services.



The Nutrition & Hydration Award – Wendy Woods – HC One


Wendy was a breath of fresh air, she sees everyone of her residents as an individual despite catering for over 40 people. Her residents are happy and healthy!



The Dignity in Care Award – Ann Keen – Direct Health


Ann’s warmth and encouraging personality makes her the perfect recipient of this award. Ann was able to provide a number of practical examples of how she provides dignity in care to people receiving services. Well done Ann!



The Dementia Carer Award – Donna Clancy – Olympus Care Services


Donna is truly person centred in her approach to working with people who have dementia. Donna clearly plays a significant role in the life of her resident and is determined to create a happy and purposeful environment.



The Care Team Award – Elcombe House Care Team – St Andrews Care Homes


This team showed passion and dedication extending beyond all expectation. Demonstrating holistic approaches to involve every team member. Nominated by a resident’s son we too can see this team are care workers in the true sense of the word.



The Care Home Activity Organiser Award – Joanne Oakes – Four Seasons Healthcare


Joanne’s passion clearly shows and the judges voted unanimously in declaring her the winner, her bereaved inclusivity work along with her previous career as a nurse really shone through in her activity provision. A very approachable, warm and understanding person who really values all of her clients.



The Ancillary Worker Award – Steve Cumberland – Eden Supported Living


Steve clearly loves him job and respects the people he provides the services to; whether completing a big project or the smallest task Steve always makes a huge difference with a smile on his face!



The Care Trainer Award – Mandy McCarthy-Ward – Ashmere Derbyshire


Mandy has clearly made a difference at Ashmere Derbyshire by driving forward a positive learning culture and oozes enthusiasm, commitment to motivating others to learn.



The Care Innovator Award – Trixie Bennett – Adults Supporting Adults


What Trixie and her team have done is amazing, their innovation alone is worthy of nationalisation. The judges unanimously chose Adults Supporting Adults as the winner of this category as Trixie’s passion and commitment shone through.



The Frontline Leaders Award – Jim Watt – Milford Care


Jim has previously won the Care Home worker award and has gone on to become an outstanding frontline leader. His passion and commitment to his team and service users is second to none and the judges all agreed that Jim was a worthy winner. Amazing work Jim!



The Home Care Co-ordinator Award – Gemma Sellars – Morton Grange Careline


Gemma showed the judges how she had taken what she had learned in her previous roles and applied it to this role. This knowledge and the actions she has taken has benefited all clients. Congratulations Gemma!



The Putting People First Award – Herculano Castro – Mentaur Ltd


Herculano is an inspiring committed individual. He displays a passion for achieving individual outcomes to empower the people he supports. He works tirelessly to forge community for the benefit of service.



The Unpaid Carers Award – Marion Hill


At 84 Mrs Hill is an outstanding example of someone who genuinely cares, not only for her son who has learning disabilities but the residents within the home where he lives. After 42 years of taking care of her son at home, Mrs Hill now travels to the home every day and has made a great impact on everyone there.



The Outstanding Contribution Award – June Rye, Morton Grange


June has dedicated over 25yrs to providing care making a substantial difference to the lives of everyone she cares for and the team around her. Her contribution to the sector throughout the years is clearly remarkable and June is a very worthy winner of this award – well done June!