On the 28th of October, the East of England Social Care Sector came together to recognise and celebrate the very best of the region.

The glittering awards evening was the perfect opportunity to say thank you and show appreciation to those who have worked so tirelessly over the last 20 months.

RCH Care Homes, Orchard House Care Home and Woodlands Care Centre were honoured to have a total of eleven finalists between them. The evening was hosted by Steve Wallis with a dinner and live musical until 1am.

The homes were represented by General Managers Sarah Watson and Rubina Arunagiri and finalists Elena David, Miranda Robinson and Mary Prechner. This was the first time that the homes had ever attended the gala awards evening and the anticipation and excitement for the awards to start was intense.

Our first winner of the evening was Elena David, Nurse from Woodlands Care Centre who won the Care Assessor/Care Planner Award.

The judges said, “She is passionate and proud to work within the sector.  She gave many examples of emotional and touching stories about the people she supports.”

Our next winner was Mary Prechner, volunteer at Woodlands Care Centre who won the Unpaid Carer Award. Mary was recognised by the Judges for her dedication over the last five years holding reminiscence events for the residents of the home.

The home’s Lifestyle Lead, John Holmes paid tribute to Mary and the difference she makes to everyone, “Mary’s wonderful work has such a notable positive effect for the residents when she holds one of her reminiscence sessions. She has been so generous in giving us her time over the years and is now very much part of our Woodlands family.”

Not only did Woodlands Care Centre win two awards but a number of the finalists from both homes won Highly Commended in their category.

Daniel Hood, was Highly Commended in The Care Home Cook/Chef Award, the judges said, “Dan has worked his way up from being a young Assistant Chef to Head Chef. A very loyal member of the Woodlands team; he has proven to be extremely flexible. Dan listens to feed-back from the residents in ways to improve and create new menu items, etc.”

Melanie Atkin was Highly Commended in the Dignity in Care Award. The judges said, “Melanie is a caring, happy and bubbly person who stands by the services users coming first and keeping them safe and happy at all times is what she strives for. Giving the residents the opportunity to make choices whenever possible.”

The Next Highly Commended Award went to Vera Dmochowska in the Ancillary Worker Award. The Judges said, “Vera’s strength and ambition to succeed is second to none, having delivered more than her own role. It was a pleasure to interview this nominee.”

The final Highly Commended went to Orchard House’s Samantha Alderton for the Putting People First Award. The judges said, “Even though it was hard for Samantha to praise herself during the interview, her extremely humble and selfless personality really came across. You can really tell how passionate she is about not only her job, but putting a smile on others faces.”

Woodland’s Manager Rubina, summed up how proud all RCH is of the nominees and winners and how honoured she was to be at the awards evening, “I’m so honoured that we had eight finalists and the nomination for Mary.  The whole evening was such a positive and great experience. We are humbled to be part of such a big event and even prouder that we came home with two awards, I am so pleased for Elena and Mary. This is a win for all of Woodlands team!”

RCH Care Homes are incredibly proud of the whole team who represented the group at the awards in a great celebration of the Social Care industry and those who work within it.

All winners now go on to the National Finals which will be announced on the 18 March 2021.