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It's a family affair for Estates Deputy Manager Grant
Grant was on his way to a holiday on the coast when his mobile phone rang.
A call for help came from staff to say one of the lifts had broken down. Rather than just stop and make a phone call, he turned the car around and went to help.
"I couldn't leave it," he remembers. "I got the temporary stairlift up and running and called out the lift engineers. Luckily, my family know what I'm like and how important the residents are to me."
This dedication is one of the reasons Estates Deputy Manager Grant was crowned Ancillary Worker of the Year in the national Great British Care Awards.
Judges described him as a "rising star with a cracking attitude."
A former electrical engineer, Grant moved to PJ Care as he wanted a change of career and a new challenge. It's a decision he's thrilled he made.
"The estates team are there to support the service. We provide a massive oocupational therapy input as well as maintaining the buildings," he says.
Grant's relationship with the residents gives him an huge sense of satisfaction in his job. From turning on someone's TV in the morning to getting them safely involved in his maintainence tasks, he's always thinking how he can enrich their lives.
"I look for every opportunity to give them a task, like ticking off my health and safety list or pretend painting with me, with water. They might be small things but they make a big difference to someone's wellbeing."
COVID has meant re-modelling the interiors of PJ Care's centres to give staff changing areas and break-out rooms where they can safely remove their masks and have a rest.
Grant decided to use artwork done by a resident to brighten the break-out space.
"It's made it feel much more comfortable, and the gentleman, who's a keen painter, was thrilled that his pictures are helping staff to relax."
Although Grant is now a manager, he still loves getting his hands dirty. He feels very lucky to still be able to work 'on the floor' and spend time with the residents. And if the catering or housekeeping team are short-staffed, Grant is ready to step into the breach.
"People told me getting a job in care was a risky move but I can see myself retiring at PJ Care.
"It's a decision I've never regretted."
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