A brave mum of one who’s battled against Crohn’s Disease is in the running for a national award.
Carolyn Hall was looking for something to fill her time when she spotted the advert for a domiciliary care worker by the Barry-based company All Care South Wales Limited.
“I didn’t really think it was going to be for me, but I thought I’d give it a go,” she said.
As it turned out Carolyn proved a “natural”, and she has now been shortlisted in this year’s annual Wales Care Awards organised by Care Forum Wales to recognise good practice in the sector.
Carolyn, 48, from Rhiwbina, has been nominated in the category for Supported Living or Small Group Community Living Care Practitioner, and on October 21 will attend the glittering ceremony at Cardiff City Hall.
She had formerly worked as an administrator for Cardiff City Council and at the Heath Hospital but before spotting the advert had been a “stay-at-home mum” for six years.
For All Care she visited a number of service-users with a range of conditions and disabilities and gained great personal satisfaction from helping them.
She was nominated for the award by her line manager Ceri Anne Gratton, who commented: “Carolyn has a holistic approach to her work and communicates simple ideas to her supervisors to enable care packages to run smoothly.
“Her work with individuals suffering with dementia has been exceptional and the praise she has received has proved her commitment and passion for her role.
“Carolyn has a gift that ensures the individuals she supports never feel rushed, always making time for a valuable cup of tea and a chat.”
The nomination was supported by testimonies from relatives of some of the people in her care.
Carolyn, who suffers from Crohn’s Disease, recently left All Care to work for the Pobl Group in a purpose-built supported accommodation in Llanishen, close to her home in Clos Hendre, Rhiwbina, and is enjoying the work just as much, especially as she is able to devote more time to the residents.
She remains a bank worker with All Care and so is sometimes called on to visit some of her previous service-users.
“I suppose I have always had a caring nature,” she said. “I get great satisfaction from the job and find it very rewarding.
“It was a big shock to learn I had been nominated and then shortlisted, but it’s nice to know that you are doing something right.”
Despite suffering from Crohn’s Disease, which meant several hospital admissions, she used to enjoy taking part in gruelling obstacle races involving crawling through mud, climbing walls and other test of stamina.
“But I now have arthritis, so I am now limited to walking. I love the outdoors, especially walking in West Wales, such as the coastal path,” she said.
Mario Kreft MBE, the Chair of Care Forum Wales, said the Wales Care Awards had gone from strength to strength.
He said: “The event is now firmly established as one of the highlights in the Welsh social care calendar.
“The aim is to recognise the unstinting and often remarkable dedication of our unsung heroes and heroines across Wales.
“The care sector is full of wonderful people because it’s not just a job it’s a vocation – these are the people who really do have the X Factor.
“If you don’t recognise the people who do the caring you will never provide the standards that people need and never recognise the value of the people who need the care in society.
“We need to do all we can to raise the profile of the care sector workforce – they deserve to be lauded and applauded.