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Celebrating Excellence

Friday 4th March 2022 saw the return of the annual Markel 3rd Sector Care Awards. The 2022 ceremony was a welcome return to an in-person event as the sector continues to overcome the impact of COVID-19 and, for the very first time, The Grand Hotel in Birmingham hosted this year’s judges, finalists, winners and sponsors. The awards also had a brand-new host to oversee proceedings and celebrate the success of each of the deserving winners.

Angela Rippon, television journalist, newsreader, writer and CBE for services to dementia care in her role as development lead with Dementia Friendly Communities, excelled in her duty and delivered a heartfelt recognition of the work undertaken by the finalists, winners and indeed, the whole voluntary and not-for-profit sector, summarising that ‘you have care in your DNA, it matters to you.’ Everyone in attendance was also treated to two wonderful performances from The Choir With No Name, a choir charity for homeless and marginalised people, who opened and closed the ceremony with a selection of popular and original songs.

Compassion Award

Finalists:  Gill Booth, St Luke’s Hospice and Sandra Yeeles, plus Tenants, Peel Way Supported Living

Winner:  Karen Breakspear, Surrey Choices

The judges were moved by Karen’s story and the clear emotional connection she has with the people she supports. The judges loved Karen’s gritty determination and were impressed by her can-do attitude and no-surrender approach, ensuring she always makes things happen for her customers. Compassionate to the core, Karen is someone who demonstrates the skill of being able to truly empathise with others.

Special recognition in this category was awarded to Sandra Yeeles, plus Tenants, Peel Way Supported Living, whose enthusiasm and compassion wowed the judges.

Community Engagement Award

Finalists: New Beginnings North East and Ovacome Community

Winner:  The Prospects Trust Ltd

The judges were amazed at how The Prospects Trust has diversified its offerings and constantly found new ways to support people. The judges praised the team’s dedicated ethos to provide employment opportunities for the wider community, promote a positive working culture and commit to sustainable and environmental practices. The judges were also impressed with how The Prospects Trust responded and adapted during the pandemic and has continued to improve and evolve its services to support people.

Leadership Award

Finalists:  Anne Shiels, Senior Operations Manager, Surrey Choices Day Services and Daniel Carmel-Brown, Jewish Care

Winner:  David Higham, The Well Communities

David Higham is an inspirational leader who has overcome personal issues and trauma, turning his lived experience into a lifeline for others. A leader who truly understands what community means and how it changes lives. And a leader who has, in fact, saved lives. The judges said someone like him is needed in every town and city. Through strength, determination and resilience, David has built a service around the community rather than building a community around a service; and in doing so has empowered people to grow, succeed and thrive.

Technology Award

Finalists: Homemead and Community Integrated Care, What To Do?

Winner: Alive Activities, Alive on Demand

Alive Activities has developed a bespoke library of personalised, interactive and responsive videos based around emotions, places and pursuits which can be highly effective in supporting people to remain engaged and have fun whilst ensuring the opportunity to take part in truly meaningful activity. The judges were particularly impressed with how the service has been adopted both nationally and internationally, offering personalised interactions and enabling conversations.

Creative Arts Award

Finalists: Creative Support and Intergenerational Music Making (IMM), Together with Music

Winner: Belong and Bluecoat, Where the Arts Belong

Belong and Bluecoat wowed the judges with its infectious positivity, enthusiasm and strong links to the community. Often going the extra mile to enhance the creative experience of its residents and those living at home, Belong and Bluecoat’s project, Where the Arts Belong, has successfully harnessed the power of the arts to empower and reintegrate previously isolated individuals, especially people living with dementia.

Collaboration (Integration) Award

Finalists: FCHPSS, St Luke’s Hospice and Progress Lifeline, Emergency Response Team

Winner: Wendy Burton, Making Space

The judges commented that Wendy demonstrated truly positive collaboration, co-producing with various partners using lived experience and tapping into the expertise of someone caring for someone with early-onset dementia. Working with an organisation who listened, championed and developed their services and support, Wendy provided inspirational leadership.

Dementia Care Award

Finalists:  Alzheimer’s Support, Home Support Team and Kirsty Rushforth, Making Space

Winner:  Alive Activities

The judges were extremely impressed by the Alive Activities’ person-centred approach, its vast army of volunteers, the way the project has united the multi-cultural community and the team’s enthusiasm and passion for the cause. The forward-thinking project prompts wider discussions around social prescribing and the judges commended the team’s determination to keep people active for longer and were encouraged to hear how the project has improved the physical and mental health of attendees.

Innovative Quality Outcomes Award

Finalists:  Phil Gibson, The Life of Opportunity Team and Yvette Goodman, Outlook Care

Winner:  Ambient Guardians

Ambient Guardians illustrates exactly what can be achieved when the voice of people using services are heard and used to inform everyone’s understanding of what good-quality care and support looks like. It is a shining example of how people are at the centre of support.

Special recognition in this category was awarded to Yvette Goodman, Outlook Care, whose innovative use of sensory care system, Tacpac, has made an overwhelming difference to the life of someone she supports. The system, and Yvette’s mastery of it, has enabled greater communication and understanding. 

Contribution to Sector Development Award

Finalist: Sue Ryder, Neurological Care Centre Lancashire

Winner: London Homeless Welfare Team

Grounded in personal lived experience, the winner of this award, the London Homeless Welfare Team, rolled up its sleeves, skilled up and got right to the front line upon its formation in January 2020. The London Homeless Welfare Team provides kindness, understanding and practical support to people often marginalised, misunderstood and vulnerable.

End of Life Care Award

Finalists: Anne Robson Trust and St Luke’s Hospice Community Services

Winner: Jewish Care, End of Life and Palliative Care Team

Jewish Care was praised by the judges for its dedication to ongoing training opportunities across the organisation. In particular, Jewish Care’s emphasis on reflection post death and focus on what can be learned from each bereavement to improve outcomes for future residents and families struck a chord with the judges. Excellent advanced care planning was also commended.

Campaigning for Change Award

Finalists:  POhWER and Unfair To Care, Community Integrated Care

Winner:  Keep Safe Team, The Grange

According to the judges, the Keep Safe Team at The Grange has ‘saved lives’ with its campaign and the team’s unwavering persistence to lobby and to influence was also applauded. The judges acknowledged how the campaign has positively impacted an entire community and were impressed with the high level of detail included in the campaign’s research. The judges said this campaign has shown how people at the heart of care are central to advocating for change and spoke of the importance of continuing more projects in the future to encourage other groups to take action on matters affecting them.

Making a Difference Award

Finalists: Adopt a Grandparent and Karolina Gerlich, The Care Workers’ Charity

Winner: London Homeless Welfare Team

The London Homeless Welfare Team sums up exactly what the awards are all about, said the judges. Getting the basics right, a tireless dedication to supporting its local community and a clear, personal commitment to the organisation’s daily operation were just a few reasons behind the judges’ verdict in this category. The judges were also impressed by the winner’s diverse recruitment of volunteers and organic approach to leadership.

A massive thank you!

Our thanks go to everyone who was involved in the Markel 3rd Sector Care Awards 2022, from those nominated to the judges, supporters and sponsors. In particular, our headline sponsor, Markel, without whom the awards would simply not be possible.

We look forward to recognising more great work in the voluntary and not-for-profit care and support sector with our 2023 event. Please follow us on social media to stay up to date.

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