The National Care Awards celebrate the very best people in the long-term care sector. One of those people is Christies Care’s very own Mandy Boyce. Mandy is in the final 5 for the ‘Special Needs Manager’ category.
If that wasn’t impressive enough, Mandy is also in the final 5 for the ‘Putting People First’ category at the east of England regional event for the Great British Care Awards, paying tribute to those individuals who have demonstrated outstanding excellence within their field of work.
I spoke to Mandy to get her reaction.
Hi Mandy, are you excited?
“Obviously! Excited & proud. I did win a national Training Award for ‘Learning Disability Training’ program in the regional finals a few years ago so that was quite exciting. But the National Care Awards are the BIG care awards so I’m really excited to be in the last five.”
So, what do you do at Christies Care?
“My job title is HSCD (Health & Social Care Diploma) & LD (Learning Disabilities) Qualifications Leader. Basically I do anything that might improve the service for anyone with a learning disability, in addition to training for qualifications.
We’ve been providing personalized guides for the clients called ‘All About Me’ and we’ve been making sure all our clients with a learning disability have something called an NHS passport, which goes to hospital with them and is meant to help hospital staff understand them.
We’ve been working on person-centred plans as well as ‘Easy Read’ materials, so we’re doing the ‘Client’s Companion’ in an easy-read format. It just means very simple words and lots of pictures to make sure people understand what the message is.
On the qualifications side the HSCD replaced NVQs. It’s a nationally-recognised qualification. It’s mainly by distance learning, so I assess their work, then I go visit them and observe them in their work as well.”
And how long have you been with Christies care?
“It’ll be 10 years in February. I was actually born and brought up in a school run by scope, a residential school for children with learning and physical disabilities, so when I left school it was a natural progression to go into that side of care. Immediately before joining Christies I ran a day centre for adults with learning disabilities and autistic spectrum conditions.”
What can you tell me about the Awards’ procedure?
“Well, someone within the company nominated me. Then you wait for the Awards to contact you to let you know if you’ve been shortlisted, out of hundreds of nominations, as a finalist. They invite you along to meet the judges and the judging panel then ask you questions. For the East of England care awards I went to Peterborough last week. This week I went to the Hilton Hotel in London and met the judges for the national care awards. Had a very nice lunch as well!”
And how did the interviews go?
“In London, we had to do a little video, walking up to the camera to say who we were and where we’re from to use on the night. Just like the Oscars!
The East of England Awards are a Circus-themed night so on the day of the interviews, we had to go in and write a little biography about what we do and had to have our picture taken. They made everyone dress up in wigs and clown noses and things, which is fine… I don’t mind looking silly”
Anything you’d like to add, Mandy?
“I’m just so happy that Christies nominated me. Sometimes you don’t really get the sort of praise for the work you do on a regular basis. But to know that your company’s nominated you for an award means they they must think that you’re doing a good job.”
Mandy isn’t the only person at Christies Care to have been nominated for the East of England care awards. Congratulations go to Kathryn Marshall (Home Care Coordinator), Helen Drain (Care Trainer) and Lin Barnes (Home Care Registered Manager) who have also made it to the final five in their categories.
The 16th National Care Awards take place at London’s Hilton Metropole Hotel on Friday, November 28th.
The Great British Care Awards, East of England regional finals take place at the Peterborough Arena on Friday, November 14th.