The willingness of staff and residents at a Bridgwater dementia care home to ‘go the extra mile’ during the pandemic has been recognised with a special party and awards to acknowledge and celebrate their work.

Members of the team at Avalon, a specialist nursing home run by award-winning care provider Camelot Care, were delighted to receive individual awards recognising the individual effort they have contributed over the past 18 months.

Jess Hawker, manager of Avalon, said: “We wanted to find a way to let our team know that the extra-special effort and dedication they always put in – but particularly since March 2020 – has genuinely been appreciated.

“Residents at a dementia care home like Avalon deserve great facilities, of course, but what they need more than anything is a loving, caring team to ensure they are living their lives to the full, each according to their own special situation.

“The pandemic presented the care sector with all kinds of well-publicised challenges, but outsiders were not necessarily aware of the lengths our staff went to protect residents, and how creative they were in coming up with alternative ways to make sure their lives continued to be interesting and fulfilling despite all the restrictions that have been in place.

“My team have been absolute heroes and we really wanted them to know we understood the personal sacrifices they often made, and that we appreciated their perseverance and ever-caring approach, even when the going was really tough.”

The Covid-safe party was held in a specially created covered area in the gardens of Avalon, and enjoyed by staff and residents alike, with summery party food provided for everyone and calming reiki healing sessions provided by therapist Pete Nicholson.

Among those presented with awards were:

  • Understanding and knowledge – Ionela Lupu and Amanda Ross with and Adriana Simona Marton as runner up
  • Team Player awards – Leonita Lee and Valency De Souza
  • Employee of the Year – Maria Noronha, with Cornel Tacu, known to all as Jimmy, as runner up
  • End of Life Care – Chloe Wegg, with Alissa Newman as runner-up
  • Nurse of the Year winner – Paula Wagemans, with Bessie Nyirongo as runner-up
  • Dignity – El Marie Heerden
  • Best newcomers- Nick Ingram and Summer Woodley
  • Rebecca Sussex was acknowledged for her contribution

Camelot Care also runs specialist dementia care homes in Wellington and Plymouth. Further details are available at www.camelotcare.co.uk