Image: The Glen Local Event
Fresh Hope Care’s annual Excellence Awards were celebrated via Zoom on Friday 29 October 2021. The awards are usually held at a venue with employees travelling from across the state to be together, but for a second year in a row the event was successfully celebrated virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The Awards celebrate staff and volunteers who have demonstrated outstanding performance in their role, providing residents and clients with an exceptional level of service on a day to day basis. This year’s awards recognise those who have encompassed the values of Creativity, Innovation, Resilience and Teamwork.
Congratulations to Coffs Haven, Green Hills, Ashwood and the Manager of Residential Services Team for each winning an award. Each team received a $3500 prize to share amongst themselves. This year also included an individual award to recognise an employee or volunteer who has demonstrated outstanding performance in one or more of the award categories. Congratulations to Kim Spratt from The Glen who won this award and also received a $3500 prize!
Lynn Bailey, Executive General Manager and MC opened the event and invited Stephanie Elliot, Manager of Residential Services, Green Hills to lead a fun series of warm up exercises for all guests.
Daz Farrell, Executive Ministry Director lead the opening prayer. He acknowledged the beauty in celebrating the goodness and teamwork of the amazing Fresh Hope Care staff. Concurrently he also acknowledged the pain and sadness that has occurred, particularly for those at The Glen who recently lost Sue Viles, a much-loved employee.
Stephen Toomey, Chairman of the Churches of Christ Community Care Board spoke about the highlights and events that have occurred over the past 18 months. “This period has been challenging and turbulent, and those challenges and turbulences have been even more significant in the area of which Fresh Hope Care operates. Lynn and her leadership team, along with the staff of Fresh Hope Care must be commended for the way in which they have met and dealt with those challenges. In doing so they and you have shown resilience, strength and compassion.”
Team Coffs Haven won the Creativity Award. Natalie Dodd, Manager of Residential Services, Coffs Haven spoke on behalf of her team, communicating gratitude for the nomination and thanked Fresh Hope Care for her appointment. She spoke about the fantastic team at Coffs and how they are working on Clifton strengths together and introducing a holistic model of care over the coming months.
Team Green Hills won the Innovation Award. Stephanie Elliott, Manager of Residential Services, Green Hills said, “My job is made really easy because of the amazing team we have here… We’ve been doing a lot of work with the organisational development team and I can honestly say that every person here is 100% committed to living those values out every day.”
Team Ashwood won the Resilience Award. Anjee Seeckun, Manager of Residential Services, Ashwood said, “I’m so thrilled! I have to say our team is such a brilliant team and they work so well together. I couldn’t have done what I had to do this year without them.”
The Residential Services Team won the Teamwork Award. Sarah Ramsey, Head of Aged Care Services spoke on behalf of the team. “Whilst I’ve been working with this team for the past 12 months, I’ve never been in a room with all of them. Despite this, everyone shares what’s happening at their site and they learn from each other. To all of you at your sites, congratulations and well done!”
The final award announced was the Individual Award. This year there were over 100 nominations for this award. “All of our awards were hard to judge but this one was particularly hard to judge. We have had more nominations for individuals than we’ve had in the past, so thank you to everyone who put in a nomination,” said Lynn.
Kim Spratt from The Glen won the Individual Award. Kim acknowledged her colleagues saying, “It’s for everyone really. We are a great team here at The Glen and I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them.”
“Congratulations Kim, I know you all work really well together as a team, but there is no doubt that your influence at The Glen is palpable, so thank you and congratulations again,” said Lynn.
Sally Wildon from Borella and Sonam Bhandari from Alexander Campbell House were announced as finalists for the Individual Award, both receiving outstanding nominations.
Lynn finished up by congratulating all the winners. “I’m really looking forward to hearing what you do with your vouchers. We hope to get back to an in-person event next year, but we plan to broadcast it so that all the sites can continue to join in. You should all be very proud of what you’ve achieved over the past 18 months and it’s my absolute pleasure to lead an amazing team like you. Thank you.”
Dan closed in prayer and thanked the senior team for leading the organisation through what’s been a challenging time. He thanked the winners and finalists, the awards committee and the IT team for their work in pulling the event together virtually. “I would also like to thank the Community Care Board, many of whom are here today. Their continued support and strong advocacy for the Fresh Hope ministry is palpable. The investment of resources into both our facilities and our people demonstrates their confidence for the future.”
Congratulations again to all winners and finalists! We hope you all had a fabulous afternoon celebrating at your site.
Creativity Award Winner: Coffs Haven Residential Care Service
Nomination Reason: The team at Coffs Haven are incredibly creative. They think outside the box and do whatever it takes to give the residents the best life possible during COVID times. For example, they often have themed events throughout closures (Mexican, pyjamas, hotdog day). These bring fun and life into the service and everyone joins in.
Innovation Award Winner: Green Hills Residential Care Service
Nomination Reason: Green Hills have an incredibly strong focus on wellness (mental and physical). During COVID residents have been doing destination walks using markers around the service which tells them how far they’ve walked. Staff have been joining in and doing additional exercises to keep active. The staff programs are online too. They’ve been very innovative in the way that they’ve made it possible for every resident to participate.
Resilience Award Winner: Ashwood Residential Care Service
Nomination Reason: Ashwood have been the most impacted by COVID. They have been surrounded by positive cases and have had the longest closures. They have had to work very hard to keep themselves, residents and families safe. They have gone above and beyond in providing extra support to residents when families can’t visit. When they did get positive cases, they didn’t get any transmission residents. They have worked so well together, have followed procedures flawlessly and have been incredibly resilient.
Teamwork Award Winner: Manager of Residential Services Team.
Nomination Reason: When there is high COVID activity, this team meets every morning virtually. They always share individual learnings and what did/didn’t work at their site to help others. There is never any judgement – they are more than happy to share with each other, and they always have each other’s backs.
Winner: Kim Spratt, The Glen Residential Care Service
Nomination Reason: Kim has great empathy for the people she cares for. She advocates for families and keeps them informed. She maintains all clinical paperwork such as dietary needs and care plans of the residents. She has great experience with wounds and dressings. She is organised, has great time management skills and works well under pressure. She is an employee everyone goes to for guidance. She brings a smile to residents when they are feeling down and knows all the residents by name.
Finalist: Sally Wildon, Borella House
Nomination Reason: Sally is the definition of teamwork and Borella House simply would not be the same without her positive can-do attitude that she brings to work daily. Sally is highly regarded by residents, families, GPs and all levels of staff. Sally fans the enthusiasm of all the team. An example of this was the initiative this spring to engage residents in hatching chicks to celebrate spring. This is a new activity at Borella House. Sally had all the residents and staff enthused in the lead up to placing the eggs in the incubators and everyone was excited to gather round and place an egg inside. This activity has brought so much joy to Borella House during lock down.
Finalist: Sonam Bhandari, Alexander Campbell House
Nomination Reason: Sonam has become a very competent multi skilled team member who not only provides direct resident care, but also willingly assists with laundry and in the kitchen as required. Sonam is compassionate and patient and consistently demonstrates a strong commitment to working effectively with her team colleagues. She always remains calm during rapidly changing situations and is able to support other team members to achieve the best possible care for residents. She is a very positive influence in the workplace and staff respond well to her approach to teamwork.