Zowie’s Story –
I was inspired to get into care after becoming the full-time carer for my husband’s Grandad, who sadly passed away not long ago, he urged me into the role and said it was something that I must do. I wish now that I had started years ago, I feel I have found my calling in life, I love being here.
Before he passed away, I started looking for care jobs and there seemed to be lots of opportunity around, however I knew I wanted to go for somewhere that would be family run and have a warm feel to it.
Ashmere seemed like it would be the right fit, so I applied. The interview seemed to go well and shortly after I got offered the job.
The induction week was amazing, I learnt so much. I always repeat to people what Sam Cave taught me, ‘treat the residents like they are your parents or grandparents’.
I want to do as much training as I can because I want to progress and learn more. I have such a passion for this role, I genuinely care about the residents so much! I love to see them happy; they truly have become like family.
It’s probably best emotionally not to get attached but I can’t help it, I just do, I love these people. It is such a privilege to work with our residents. We are not robots here; we have empathy and want to be able to provide great care to our residents. Obviously, a big part of the role is personal care, but it is so much more than that, the relationships that I have made with our residents will stay with me forever!
I didn’t want to feel like just a number in a company, and I definitely don’t feel like that here. I love it so much; I am so happy. I love my work colleagues, the seniors are so supportive, if I ever need anything I know that they are there. I am so grateful for this role it’s amazing to go home knowing that you have made a difference.
Deana’s Story –
I began working for Ashmere in 2019 when Heanor Park Care Home first opened; both being a receptionist and working in care were unfamiliar to me. I had been in my previous role for over 10 years at an estate agent’s which is vastly different to my role I have now within the care industry.
I was ready for a change however I was not going to move for just any role it, I knew it would have to be the right fit as I wanted to find somewhere that I could stay.
Unfortunately our family didn’t have a good experience previously with a care home, my father-in-law went into a home that didn’t keep us informed of changes. When your family member moves into a care home you want to know that they will be well looked after and have the reasurance that they are receiving good quality care. I knew I didn’t want other families to have this experience, so when I saw the receptionist role at Heanor Park being advertised I knew it was somewhere I wanted to be.
No two days are ever the same, this role is so much more than just manning the reception, I will do whatever needs doing. I am regularly in the households getting involved with our residents; In this role I’m not thinking about myself, I am thinking about the needs of the residents and the their families.
When you do this role you don’t think about yourself, you are thinking about the residents and the family’s needs and you are doing it for them. I have been able to support residents on end of life care and it is such an honour, it is always sad but it is so good to be a part of their final days.
I always say that I am new to care even though I have been here over 3 years now but it’s because I am still growing in my role and there is so much more for me to learn. I want to learn and help the best that I can.
I have made some great friends while working for Ashmere and we have such a good team and I know our residents are well looked after. The residents matter most and I have their best interests in mind, this role is all about looking after people here!
Tony’s Story –
After 35 years of employment at my previous job I was made redundant. Rather than going back into a similar field I decided I wanted a change and to try and find a job in an industry that would be stable. It was a bit of a fluke, but I happened to see I sign advertising care worker jobs at Codnor Park Care Home and thought why not apply.
After applying for a position at Codnor Park Care Home I was instead offered a position at The Firs Nursing Home which seemed to be a better fit for me as I liked being involved in the nursing side of things. I found the more you get involved the quicker you learn, with care you can’t be a spectator, you must get involved.
Being a care worker isn’t easy both physically and emotionally but it’s the little things that make this job so special, for example you could be working with someone with dementia who has lost all their memory and then all of a sudden they may get a moment of clarity that you get to be there for, it’s these little things that you just think wow that was worth it all.
I went straight from my role in care onto maintenance, I was at the stage in care where I had allowed too much in. Emotionally it was a lot and I felt that the move would be a good move for me I had a background in DIY and really got on with Paul brilliantly, he helped me get into the role and encouraged me to become part of the team so the move made sense. Sam and Paul has supported me all the way through and so have the whole team! I know that if I need anything I can ask. This opportunity allowed me to still able to be around people now be visiting all the homes rather than just being in one place.
After a year on the maintenance team I still love the role and the variation. I come in everyday and have different things that need that need to be done. We recently we put up the Christmas decorations and it was so great to see the residents absolutely loving watching us put them up. These things make it all worth it.
I’m not perfect I do make mistakes, but I am well supported and know that I can just call the team and get support. This attitude echoes right across the company, when I was in care the training was phenomenal and the ability to progress is there if anyone wants it which is why it was so easy for my role to evolve into something new.I was looking for a forever home and Ashmere has provided that.
Riah’s Story –
Initially I came to Valley Lodge for work experience while I was still in school and enjoyed it so much that when I finished my GCSE’s, I returned to the home as a care assistant. I loved this role, for me the interactions with the residents are what really made it. I loved being able to promote independence and get to know every individual, getting to build bonds as well as gain understanding to how I could best support them. This role isn’t just about giving medication and care but being able to provide all the other little things that a person may need and want.
After a few years as a care assistant, I was asked if I would like to progress onto the role of senior care worker, which I decided to take. Ashmere provided me with all the training and support I needed to progress within the company including completing my level 2& 3qualifications in health and social care.I really couldn’t imagine working anywhere else which is why when the role of Deputy was being advertised, I decided to write a letter of interest, to be honest I didn’t think I’d even be considered for the role but to my surprise I was offered the position.
I have been a deputy manager for just under two years now and am still learning new things all the time. I love this role because I can see and be a part of all the work that goes on behind the scenes as well as jumping onto a care shift and maintain and continue to grow strong relationships with people within the home.
Healthcare can be hard sometimes there’s no getting around that but even if you just make one person smile you go home feeling like you’ve done achieved something and have made a positive impact on someones life and that is everything!
Ashmere invest in their staff, they are always looking at ways to help their staff to develop within the company. Ashmere go the extra mile for their staff for example, every easter and Christmas, the director of the company buys every staff member a gift. Its small things like this that really show us how appreciated we all are.Although I only work at one of Ashmere’s homes I still feel part of a bigger family and love meeting up with staff from other homes when doing training and at company events.
Hannah’s Story –
I came to Ashmere as a student Nurse in 2006 and really wanted to continue working with the company, I asked if there were any vacancies for care assistant roles and by 2007 I was officially employed by Ashmere based in the nursing side of The Firs.
When the dementia unit opened at The Firs Nursing Home, I did the majority of my shifts in there working mainly as a carer. After I had gained more experience within Ashmere I started to help cover shifts at other homes.
Over the years I continued to help around the different Ashmere homes, going where I was most needed. Ashmere continued to support my training which led me to achieving my NVQ qualifications and medication training.
I left Ashmere to go to New Zealand for a year in 2012 not knowing what the future had in store. After my year away I decided I wanted to come back to Ashmere and keep progressing with my career, and after gaining further experience I became deputy manager at Smalley Hall.
Early this year I was offered the role of ‘Peripatetic deputy’, I have always liked variation and already had lots of experience helping in the different homes as well as enjoying being peoples’ support, so this role seemed like a great fit.
To anyone thinking of working in care, it is such a rewarding job. Even though some days can be physical or mentally draining, there is always a moment that makes you think – I love working in care! This could be making a resident smile, listening to the residents’ life history, or even a tearful check in with a work buddy! As they say “It’s OK not to be OK” – don’t be afraid to let them tears roll! It makes you feel better!
We work as a team even though we have our own unique quirks and strengths but that’s what makes us a family!
If you ask for support Ashmere will always try to provide it. There are always routes and ways to progress within the company and training to support role progression.