Going the extra mile

Date: 25 February 2021

During these challenging times, our Extra Care Scheme and Services Managers have been going above and beyond to support some of our most vulnerable residents. We’ve caught up with Grant and Heidi, two of our Extra Care Services Managers, to find out a little more about the work they’ve been doing…

 

How have things changed in your role since last March?

Grant: The role of an Extra Care Services Manager is already a very challenging one. When COVID-19 hit last year, things became even more challenging. We had to adapt to an ever-changing situation, including changes to rules and guidelines and occasionally, dealing with outbreaks. We’ve created new systems of working, sometimes on the fly, having to react to changes in guidance with very little notice. As well as supporting our residents, we’ve been working with and reassuring families who are desperate to see their relatives.

 

What have been the main challenges you’ve faced during the pandemic?

Heidi: Partnership working has proved challenging as everyone is scattered around. It’s been difficult to adapt to spending less time with colleagues in person, which was especially felt after losing a close friend and colleague.

 

Grant: One of the largest challenges has been supporting our residents to stay within guidelines. We support a very diverse range of people throughout Extra Care; often people who have learning disabilities or conditions such as dementia. At times they’ve found it very hard to understand the risks and the guidelines, so we’ve had to adapt and find ways to help these people remain as safe as possible.

 

How have you overcome those challenges and what have you done to continue to support customers?

Heidi: We’ve all worked really hard to support each other through this awful time. There’s been lots of phone calls and onsite visits, where we have been able to help those who need some support. We’ve had an amazing amount of support from our Extra Care manager, who has been a great mentor through these difficult times. He’s been there to answer our questions at all hours and help us to continue delivering a great and safe service to our residents.

 

What is the most rewarding part of your job? 

Grant: The most rewarding part of my role during the last year has been watching my team continually rise to the challenges they have been faced with. Each and every member of my team has gone above and beyond to make sure our most vulnerable residents have the support they need.

 

Heidi: Knowing that we have changed someone’s life for the better when they are given the opportunity to move into an Extra Care Service has been one rewarding part. I also work with a great team of people who have shown care, empathy and bravery throughout this year to our residents, and put their own fears aside to support all teams on site. They have been absolute stars!