There were celebrations this week as we announced the winner
of this year’s Gill Chase Award at a special event hosted at Fakenham Race
We were delighted to welcome our eight finalists, service
users and their families to the venue for the celebration which has become a
favourite date in the Extra Hands diary.
We received a total of 64 nominations for the Gill Chase
award, which started four years ago in memory of a long-standing committed
carer who died suddenly in 2014 aged 68.
One finalist from each of the company’s offices in Heacham
and Norwich were chosen before 25-year-old carer Lorren Payne was announced as
this year's winner after reaching the final shortlist of eight for the second
Lorren was described in her nomination as a ‘caring and
compassionate person’ and ‘an asset to the company’ by service users and the
recently-promoted team member was delighted to receive the award after working
with us for three years, based at the Heacham office.
She studied health and social care at college and had a
spell in retail before embarking on her career with us and, having been
promoted, Lorren is now a rapid response team member.
She said her work was incredibly rewarding and added that
the award was for the whole team because they all supported each other.
“I love my job and it’s incredibly rewarding - I would
recommend it as a career to any young person wondering what they could do,” she
The second finalist was carer Mark Potter who works from our
Norwich office and has only been with the company a year. His cheerful nature
and willingness to ‘go the extra mile’ saw him take the runner’s up spot.
Mark said he was delighted to have made the final and he
gave his presentation bouquet to his wife Kaye who also attended the ceremony.
Each of the other six finalists was presented with a
certificate by one of our founder's David Evans.
Hazel Evans said staff always looked forward to the award and she praised the
entire team for their dedication and care.
The Heacham office finalists also included Daniella Silva
who ‘always asks if there is more she can do’. Her nomination added: “The fact
that the day starts well if Daniella is the carer says it all.”
Oksana Trofimova is a ‘calming influence and is never
hurried.’ She is “excellent at sorting out any problems and is patient,
understanding perfectly others’ needs with a positive attitude and always goes
the extra mile.
Julie Woodberry always treats the service user with dignity
and respect and adapts care as necessary. She is described as “kind and
understanding” and is always encouraging.
From the Norwich office, Jess Mills encourages independence
where possible and is very respectful, always caring and always 'goes the extra
mile in little ways'.
John Thompson always adapts and is caring and thoughtful
along with being patient and efficient with a good sense of humour. His meals
were 'always appetising' and he is “always ready to lend a hand” while
Warrant plans ahead, is well-prepared and has a great knowledge of dementia.
She has a “warm personality” and “does whatever she can to improve service
users’ quality of life” while promoting dignity and independence.