Saturday 21st November saw over 300 of the very best in social care attended a glittering awards ceremony at The Belfry Hotel, Nottingham for the finals of the Great East Midlands Care Awards, where the category winners were announced.

The Great East Midlands Care Awards, sponsored by Access Health & Social Care brought together the category finalists from across the East Midlands region.

The awards are part of the Great British Care Awards, a series of 9 regional awards celebrating excellence across the care sector.  The purpose of the awards is to promote best practice within both home care and care homes sectors, and pay tribute to those individuals who have demonstrated outstanding excellence within their field of work.

Sector support includes The Department of Health, The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), Alzheimer’s Society, The National Care Forum and The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) as well as local authorities and commercial organisations.

There are a total of twenty 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, and specialist care in areas such as dementia and innovation.

The gala awards evening started in style with a drinks reception, followed by a superb gourmet dinner with some surprise entertainment throughout.  This year’s awards theme wasGrease and were presented by entertainer Steve Walls with an abundance of entertainment from Encore Entertainment.

Paul Patarou, Head of Sales for Access Health & Social Care, said: “We have had the pleasure of being key sponsors of the Great British Care Awards for 2 years in a row. I believe that these events and awards are hugely valuable in highlighting the great work that the care sector delivers and goes a long way in rewarding individual excellence. I am both proud and excited to be able to participate in the coming years’ activities representing Access’ care sector software PeoplePlanner and CareBlox.”

Sean Turner, Director of The Great British Care Awards, said: “The Great British Care Awards are now in their seventh year and are continuing to go from strength to strength.   We never cease to be amazed with the quality of nominations and this year is no exception.  This evening was a true celebration for the unsung heroes of social care, without whom quality care provision in our communities would fail.”

Winners of the Great East Midlands Care Awards will go through to the final at Birmingham’s ICC in Spring 2016.

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


Care Employer Award

Milford Care Group

Milford Care Group really stood out because of their commitment to staff and the individuals they support.  Both are empowered to develop their skills and talents and to take an active role in the company.


Care Home Worker Award

Sally Harris, Christchurch Group

Sally has a good balanced approach to providing care.  Her diverse outlook on life and experience allows her to acknowledge difference and empathise with her wide range of residents.  She works with people to get them to where they want to be without limits.  Sally’s glass is never half full – it’s full!


Home Care Worker Award

Andrea James, Audley Care

We chose Andrea for her warm, smiley nature and her understanding that the little things are so important.  Andrea champions enabling the people she support with a ‘Let’s do it together’ and approach and makes a great cuppa!


Care Newcomer Award

Maryam Karim, Choices Care

An outstanding example of a person that puts care at the centre of everything she does.  Maryam goes above and beyond for the benefit of the people in her care and takes a proactive approach to ensure the wellbeing of others.


Care Home Manager Award

Martha Buchannan, Green Care Group

Martha embodies everything that you would want in a care home manager.  She radiates passion for the service that she leads.  All of her residents and staff are important to her as individuals.  She ensures that the care home and her residents are closely linked to the community and aims to make wishes come true.


Home Care Manager Award

Mesha Moyce, Direct Health

Mesha is an incredibly enthusiastic individual who thrives on providing a fantastic service. Herpassion for her job, her staff and service users wellbeing is inspirational and she has made tremendous improvements in a very short space of time which have made a considerable difference.


Nutrition and Hydration Award

Gillian Roberts, Milford Care Group

Gillian said that taking time with her residents is the best job in the world.  She has a the patience and perseverance to help a resident regain his dignity through food.  The judges felt Gillian is a real star and asset to her organisation.


Dignity in Care Award

Lorraine Poundall, JHB

Lorraine’s passion for her job is infectious.  She demonstrates a willingness to stand out from the crowd and go the extra mile.  Lorrain will defend the dignity and rights of the people in her care and ensure they are treated as if they were her own family.

Dementia Carer Award

Paul Whetton, Woodleigh Care

Paul’s enthusiasm and empathy shone through.  He brings life skills and recognises the importance of treating everyone individually.  He quoted several ideas that he has applied and developments in dementia care that he would like to implement.


Care Team Award

Ridgeway House, Olympus Care Services

Ridgeway House has a great manager who encourages staff to think laterally and take calculated risks.  A transparent and supportive team has evolved.  Visiting nurse have commented on the home’s success having see it turned around in the last 12 months.


Activity Co-ordinator Award

Debbie Seal, Ashmere

Debbie looks forward to going to work every day and her career has changed her life for the better.  She loves to have fun and party with her residents and also shows compassion, dignity and respect for residents and their families with the end of life activities.


Ancillary Worker Award

Diane Birkin, Ashmere

Diane presented her case in a very professional manner displaying clear leadership qualities. She evidenced that she shared her knowledge with junior housekeepers and is keen to train new staff.  She is caring and passionate and a worthy winner.


Care Trainer Award

Sam Cave, Ashmere Derbyshire

Sam has a great understanding of the issues faced by frontline care staff and business pressures.  An innovative and dedicated trainer, Sam is a worthy winner.


Frontline Leaders Award

Briony Williamson, Milford Care

Briony is inspirational and puts residents at the heart of everything she does.  Job satisfaction is a huge motivator for Briony.  She truly loves her job and attends every residents’ funeral as for her they are like family.


Home Care Coordinator Award

Liam Finnegan, Morton Grange

Liam is a very impressive young man who is new to the care sector and who has implemented some innovative management systems. He is extremely knowledgeable and committed to improving and growing the domcare service across a difficult geographical area.


Putting People First Award

Gemma Lilliman, Woodleigh Care

Gemma is passionate about fully understanding the people she supports in order to provide person centred care.  She is motivated to make a difference by putting the individual at the heart of everything.


Good Nurse Award

Anne Henson, Exemplar Health Care

Anne feels humbled about being nominated and oozes passion for what she does. Anne strives to enable independence and promote wellbeing by working in partnership with health professionals. For Anne it’s a vocation not a job.


Unpaid Carer Award

Harry Scott

Mr Scott’s wife was a resident at Morton Grange from June 2013 to January 2014. She suffered with dementia which caused her to be confused, frustrated and agitated and she displayed some very challenging behaviour. Despite this she always responded very positively to her husband and they clearly doted on one another.

She first came to Milford Grange for two weeks respite to give Mr Scott a break, as he had been coping at home with limited support but it was decided that it would be in her best interests to remain.  Harry Scott has been a dedicated carer to his wife and is loved by all the staff.


Outstanding Contribution to Social Care Award

Julie Jepson, Milford Care

Julie has been a nurse for over 30 years, the last 26 years at Milford Care, devoting herself to the care of the elderly.  In all that time she has remained bubbly, but above all very focused and professional in the care she gives.

Julie delivers her nursing care with oodles of compassion not only to the people in her care but also when dealing with relatives’ worries and queries about their loved ones.

Over the last 10 years Julie has been a mentor for overseas adaptation nurses.  Julie’s wealth of knowledge as a nurse has earned her great respect from all her colleagues of whom she is very supportive.

Since 1989 Julie has built up excellent working relationships with visiting professionals which goes a long way to establishing and maintaining an excellent reputation within the community.  Her devotion to those in her care is exemplary, as is her contribution to the care sector. She is incredibly deserving of this award.