We love talking to our staff to find out what makes them tick and usually we feature one staff member at a time. However, Charmaine and Laura not only have similar job titles (Field Care Supervisor and Senior Care worker respectively), but they have also recently been featured on our fabulous billboard in the heart of Norwich. So we thought we would catch up with them to find out how life in the limelight is treating them….!
Are you both local to Norfolk?
Charmaine – I am a true Norfolk girl!
Laura – I am originally from Coventry, but as I moved here when I was 11, I do consider myself to be a Norfolk girl!
Have you both been in care for a long time and what attracts you to the industry?
Laura – I originally worked in bars and clubs when I first left school, so I was about 28 when I joined the sector. When I was first considering a care in this industry, I did a shift in a care home but what really struck me is how much so many of the residents wanted to be at home and it seemed to me that if only they had the right care in place, they could be. It was this that made me want to go into domiciliary care, and that’s what I’ve been doing ever since!
Charmaine – Care is a new career for me, as until I joined Cavell Healthcare about a year ago, I had a long career as an Funeral Director near where I live in Stalham. I wanted a change though and I love it.
Laura – I can agree with that! Whenever anyone meets Charmaine or sees her doing her job, they can’t believe she’s not been doing it her whole life – she’s a natural!
What does the job involve?
Charmaine – As Senior Care Worker, I support the team and clients with calls, with the support of Laura as my Field Care Supervisor. We have a team of 24 carers, and we cover from Coltishall and Waxham down to Stokesby and Caistor, so there are a lot of people to supervise across a large area. It is important that the team and our clients feel that they are being fully always supported.
Laura – Absolutely! We will get involved with everything including meeting new clients and carrying out care assessments, making sure care packages are in place, monitoring clients for changes and specific needs, supporting the team, checking charts and contacting social services and the district nurse, as well as covering shifts when staff are unwell or (more recently) isolating. Covid also means that we have had to take Covid tests out to our team on the road and ensure that their results are sent away and monitored.
Charmaine – As you can probably tell, there is no such thing as a typical day!
What do you like best?
Laura – I think I can confidently answer for us both – care calls. It is why we do the job we do.
Charmaine – I agree. Visiting clients and seeing how they are getting on, knowing we are helping to make a positive difference in their lives is so rewarding.
How has Covid impacted your job?
Charmaine – at first, it didn’t to be honest. We were all a bit nervous about being out during lockdown, as it was such a new and unique situation, but we soon got used to it and the team coped really well. More recently it has got a lot harder, as more people are getting sick and we are all having to work harder to cover the workload.
Laura – I agree. It seems much closer to home this time, as Norfolk has been so hard hit in recent weeks. I have young children at home, so it’s always in the back of my mind that I don’t want to catch it and carry it home. Plus, the horrible regular Covid tests – a necessary evil for sure.
What is special about Cavell Healthcare?
Charmaine – The team! I have been made to feel so welcome from the minute I joined the company. There is such a wonderful atmosphere in the office, so they team often pop in just to say ‘hi’ and when we are out on the road, it’s lovely to catch up with our carers and see them enjoying doing the job they love.
Laura – I think the Management of the company has a lot to do with that. I have worked at other companies and this isn’t always the case but here at Cavell, leadership comes from the top. They treat the staff really well – we are respected and given ownership for our jobs, which makes us feel valued.
What would you say to anyone considering a career in care?
Laura – Just do it!! You won’t know until you try and it’s a great career with fantastic prospects.
Charmaine – If you are even considering it, then definitely give it a go as I’d be really surprised if anyone who is thinking about it didn’t enjoy it. It is such a rewarding career and it’s lovely to finish a client visit knowing you’ve made a difference to that person’s day.
How does it make you feel seeing your face on the billboard?
Together – We are proud to represent the company!