Leading UK not-for-profit care provider Greensleeves Care celebrated self-starters and initiatives including a project to cut the use of plastic bags at its annual awards.

The awards recognise talent and efforts in every aspect of a care home’s life, from management to catering and gardening. Nominations are submitted by colleagues, residents, and their families.

A notable theme that emerged from the hundreds of nominations submitted this year was innovation and initiative being used to improve systems and practices within the group’s 28 care homes.

One nominee was praised for pioneering a Wellbeing Clinic, which has gone from strength to strength due to her dedication. The clinic now incorporates champion roles that focus on areas including diabetes, oral care, hearing aid care and nutrition, after the nominee identified that these areas needed a more specialised care approach.

At the ceremony, held in London on 20 April, the Sustainability and Innovation award went to one of the organisation’s homes for the efforts of colleagues across all departments in creating a more efficient and sustainable home; from the domestic team’s drive to reduce plastic bag and paper towel waste, to the catering team’s idea of replacing purchased ice bags for a more efficient, packaging-free ice-making machine.

Another home was recognised for its ‘Seed to Fork’ programme, which sees residents discuss with the gardening and catering teams which produce they would like to eat in the upcoming seasons, then help with the planting, growing and harvesting of the crops.

Other creative ideas across the organisation were commended in the awards, such as one home’s ‘Wishing Tree’ initiative, which sees residents write down wishes and hang them on a tree for the home’s team to help make a reality. Granted wishes so far have ranged from having a pint at the pub with friends to seeing a Spitfire plane take off.

Paul Newman, Chief Executive of Greensleeves Care, said:

“This year’s awards highlighted the sheer resilience, ingenuity and willpower of our people.”

“The heartfelt nominations prove something I already know about our workforce, that it is made up of dedicated professionals who use their skills and experience to innovate, think ahead, anticipate difficulties and solve problems.”

“Time and time again, colleagues are nominated for their ‘nothing is too much trouble’ attitude, an approach that is part of Greensleeves Care’s DNA, and key to our sustainability and success.”

Full List of Winners:

Care Professional of the Year: Carla Bryan, Broadlands

Colleague of the Year: Terry Havard, The Briars

Community Engagement Award: Laura Biggs, Henley House

Dining Experience Award: Gloucester House Team

Excellence in Resident Experience: Diane Nolan, Lavender Fields

Excellence in the Provision of Dementia Care: Joanna Gregory, Rose Cottage

Fundraising Initiative of the Year: Friends of Broadlands

Gardens and Grounds Award: Broadlands

Home of the Year: De Lucy House

Living our Values Award: Broadlands

Manager of the Year: Lauren Tubby, De Lucy House

Most Improved Home: Tickford Abbey

Provision of an Outstanding Activities Programme: Diane Nolan, Lavender Fields

Sustainability and Innovation Award: Torkington House

Unsung Hero: Janet Langley, Glebelands

Volunteer of the Year: Patsy Sale, Harleston House