A TEESSIDE care home has been named “Employer of the Year” by a regional training provider after their work with social care apprentices.
The Gables Care Home, on Highfield Road, Middlesbrough, received the award from SHAPE Training, which provides training and apprenticeships across the North East.
Simon Healey, CEO of SHAPE Training, paid a visit to The Gables to present home manager Mark Culley with the award.
Simon said: “I was delighted to recognise The Gables Care Home as Shape Training’s Employer of the Year.
“I valued the quality of the support given to any learner on placement with The Gables and, as such, the award was very well deserved, showing the excellent partnership working between us.”
Mark said: “I was surprised and astounded to receive the award. I value the support we get from the students and love that we can help them grow and develop to become key workers in the sector.
“To receive such recognition out of all the care homes in Middlesbrough shows the high level of support and care we provide our residents and staff and also to the young, aspiring apprentices who chose The Gables as part of their journey into a fulfilling career in social care.”
The Gables has been offering apprenticeship work experience opportunities for many years, but this was put on hold due to restrictions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.
The programme was recently restarted with their first apprentice since 2019, when 17-year-old Ebony Duce began working at the care home earlier this year.
She started studying health and social care, alongside first aid, at SHAPE Training in August 2021 and is currently completing her level 3 diploma while undertaking work experience at The Gables.
She said: “The staff team at The Gables have been so welcoming and the residents are really lovely. I have been really enjoying it.
“My favourite part of the job is interacting with the residents, getting to know their stories and hear about their lives before arriving at The Gables.
“Even though someone might be living with dementia, everyone’s experience of it is different. If you take the time to get to know the person, they will help you learn how best to care for them, which means I’m doing the best job and they’re getting the best care.
“As part of my job, I’ve been supporting residents with drinks, snacks, and for residents who have a soft diet to eat their meals. I’ve also been helping with activities for the residents, such as pamper sessions, hair dressing, arts and crafts, baking rice crispy cakes, and playing bingo.
“After I’ve completed my level 3 diploma, I’d like to go to Teesside University and eventually become an RGN [Registered General Nurse].”
Mark added: “Our relationship with SHAPE is important and, since Ebony’s been here, she’s helped residents and staff in many ways – both physically and emotionally.
“Ebony has made herself an intrinsic part of the team. It’s great to be able to be part of training the next generation of carers and nurses.”