Posts in Care Home News
NURSING STORIES: Edwin Jose and Opportunities for Promotion
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Edwin Jose’s nursing story

 “I am the Deputy Manager for Brunelcare’s Glastonbury care home.

I qualified as a nurse in India in 2008 and worked as a cardiac ITU nurse in a hospital for nearly two years.

It became my ambition to work in health care management and in 2010 I decided to move to the UK to complete post graduate diploma in health care management in  Leeds and later I undertook an MBA in General Management, specialising in HR. I was particularly interested in exploring employee motivation and performance in care homes, making this my study focus. Whilst completing my full-time study I also worked part-time as a Senior Carer in a BUPA care home, until the end 2013.

Once I had gained my MBA my sister recommended that I apply for a job with Brunelcare; she was working for Brunelcare at their Glastonbury care home. So I applied and joined them in January 2014 as a Unit Care Leader. My career has progressed quickly since then, with three promotions: to Registered Nurse (when my PIN was granted), becoming a Senior Nurse and then in March 2018 I was appointed as the Deputy Manager for the care home.

The thing I enjoy most about being a nurse is that I love the people living here. Highlights about working for Brunelcare include the incredible support I have received from senior management, the training I have received - which is more than I have received in other organisations. Our staffing ratios and employee long service is above average, and was something that felt encouraging when applying to work for Brunelcare.

In my current role I enjoy a good working atmosphere; I can plan my day and that of our teams. My role entails a lead responsibility for management, support and direction of the care services, managing medications in the home (Glastonbury provides 24/7 nursing care) and spending plenty of time with our residents. The main aspect of my Deputy Management role is the care planning, for example we carefully build an individual’s tailored care plan over several weeks and then continue to develop it overtime. I also carry out pre-assessments, that is, visiting people before they move in to the care home to assess their situation, care needs and agree when they might join us.

The aspect about my job that I most enjoy is the freedom to explore new ideas, new approaches to the care we provide and seeing the benefits of the training and support we receive working for Brunelcare.”

“To find out more visit

Care Home NewsBarbara Harris
Dance Your Heart Away at Rosedale

We at Rosedale feel that everyday someone who is living with a dementia should dance their heart away, using the BUTTERFLY APPROACH we go the extra mile to not only live in the moment with our residents but to dress up and be who we are, fun love and laughter matters and it truly makes a difference to the people living and working here, everyday is a fun day.

We understand that having a dementia is like being on a stormy sea at times with no sense of direction, we help everyday by being person centred, feeling based being together, creating intense feelings within all of us.

We break down institutional barriers and create an atmosphere that matters to the people that live here.


AbleCare join Alive! in an All Aboard "Floating memories" Adventure

AbleCare use Alive! to enhance the activities they offer to their residents who participated in the Floating Memories activities detailed below:

Alive is the UK’s leading charity enriching the lives of older people in care and training their carers. We engage older people through a range of creative activity sessions in over 350 care homes across nine counties, and train and support care staff to deliver outstanding care at every opportunity

Through our partnership with All Aboard Watersports we’ve been providing an exciting and unique experience for some of Bristol’s care home residents. Alive ‘Floating Memories’ sessions enable older people to get out on the water to take in the sights of Bristol’s harbour, whilst learning about some of its fascinating history and sharing their memories of the area. The sessions were provided for free as part of the Come on Board project, funded by Bristol Ageing Better.

Taking place on a fully accessible boat with a front ramp meant the trips were accessible for all, including those in wheelchairs. Each trip around the harbour lasted 45 minutes to an hour, with time for a cup of tea afterwards. Alive facilitators accompanied the residents and talked with them about local history around the harbour and played music to add to the experience. Sea shanties have been a huge hit, with residents enjoying singing ‘Haul Away for Rosie’ and making up their own verses.

Bristol’s harbour is full of unique history, including the S.S. Great Britain, the old shipyards and steam cranes. Residents saw all this from the boat and discussed the history behind it.  One Floating Memories trip coincided with the Bristol Harbour Festival, meaning there were hundreds of boats on the water, which was an amazing experience. Highlights of other trips included getting up close to a £75m super yacht and watching peregrine falcons swoop over the water!

The sessions weren’t just about the history of Bristol, they also provided a wonderful opportunity for residents to reminisce. One gentleman told us how he had seen the S. S. Great Britain being towed back into the harbour in 1970 and he remembered how broken it was. Another resident shared how they used to work in transportation, and so recognised so many buildings and places from the water.

Activities like these help to connect older people in care to the wider community and gives them an opportunity to explore the city they live in. It also shows just what breadth of activities can be possible for care home residents. The Come on Board Project runs until the end of 2019 and during that time we will be taking many more older people out onto the water.

All the residents and carers have told us how much they enjoyed the trip around the harbour and how good it was to do something different. At the end of each trip, the most common question was “When can we come again?”

For more information about Alive please visit:

Follow Alive on Facebook and Twitter: @aliveactivities  

To find out more about Come on Board please visit:

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Staff Rewarded by Fire Walk!

Catherine Twine-Kelly is the Managing Director at Supported Independence Ltd. She told us about their approach to rewarding staff.

Each year SI holds a surprise event for its staff to thank them for all their hard work, dedication and commitment.  This has been clearly demonstrated with the recent snow, with staff staying over night and walking up to 4 miles to get into work!

The surprise was a fire walking event, where staff where amazed to see the burning logs! They found they had other treats in store were when they first had to prove their skills in chopping wood with their bare hands and breaking pointed arrows against their throat!

Everyone left on a high and now we just have to plan for next year! 

Winash Community Based Activities

Winash Care Home have been very active in promoting community and intergenerational activity so we are delighted that 2018 started really well for us.

We were granted books through The Big Issue as part of their big book giveaway initiative, to support us in our reading to Nursery children from next door; but in addition they also did a double page spread in the national magazine as part of mental health awareness week. The spread was regarding the two way benefits of our intergenerational activities.

Additionally, Winash Wingers, were awarded a grant from The Big Lottery. The money is to make an inter-generational 'Communi-tree', and we have enlisted Wyldwood Arts to deliver the project. Our plan is to work with a range of local community groups. So far, we have worked with local 6th formers, next on the list will be Nursery children, followed by the local YMCA, and 3 Brownie groups. The end project will be a multi- sensory tree. Which will be on public display at 'Clevedon flower show'.

CINTRE: Community based activities supporting users

Sound Minds: Music for Mental Health: As we are understanding the positive impacts of music more and more and because it runs so deeply through the veins of Bristol, we have organised a little evening of music to both celebrate and raise awareness of how it can make a great difference, particularly to those most in need. The event is to be held at the Leftbank on 128 Cheltenham Rd, on the 27th of April 2018. There will be great music, excellent drinks and spectacular dancing. All proceeds are going to Cintre to help kick start a music project for service users. This Facebook link has more details and regular updates on bands playing, DJ sets and general important information:

Lunch Club: We have been awarded just under £5,000 to start a Community Lunch Club at Invia!
Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund we will be setting up a Lunch Club for service users to learn to cook, eat together and meet new friends.
Service users will get:
- Free cooking lessons
- Free meals
- A chance to meet new people
- Lessons in nutrition, health and safety in the kitchen and hygiene around food
- Your travel to and from Invia paid for

Dan's Vlog - Work Experience: Meet Dan who is supported by Cintre Reachout, he has recently started volunteering for a local charity shop to gain skills for the workplace. You can watch this 'chatty' video led by Dan to learn more of how his Cintre Support Workers are helping him.

Vegetarian Week: Between the 14th and the 20th of May it is Vegetarian Week, where lots of people celebrate vegetarian food and how it helps with health and the environment.
We have been awarded over £100 to spend on a Vegetarian Taster Session at Invia.
We will be cooking a three course meal for over 30 people where you are all invited to come along and enjoy some vegetarian tasters for free!
Don’t worry if you don’t like vegetables, we will be coming up with some delicious recipes for you to experience vegetarian food in a positive way.


Care Home Open Day 21st April

Care Home Open Day is upon us yet again!

With CQC emphasis on community links, Care Home Open Day is a really important initiative that can help you shine at the next assessment. You can find out more about it from their website

In 2018, the official day is 21st April but you can choose a date that suits you. Member Able Care have chosen 5th April because it works better for them for their open day at HENGROVE LODGE CARE HOME:  in Petherton Road. The idea behind the day is to encourage local people to visit care homes in their community and to work together to develop better relationships.

This important connection is something that Hengrove Lodge has nurtured and the home is already acting as a community hub, including regular visits from the Stay and Play Group from Southern Links Children’s Centre.

As part of the Care Home Open Day 2018 and working with LinkAge, Hengrove Lodge is hosting an afternoon with tea and cakes and the opportunity to get involved in flower arranging with Don Gay’s Florist who are based nearby.  Members of Christ Church Coffee Group have been invited to join in along with residents and their families.  You can see the full programme for the day under our page on the website by visiting

Sam Hawker, AbleCare Homes Director said: "This is a great way to show the excellent services on offer and the fantastic work that goes on at Hengrove Lodge.  Some people still have misconceptions about care homes so we are keen to dispel any myths and for people to come and have a look around, meet the staff and our residents."

CINTRE Extends Community Support with New Initiatives for Service Users

Cintre has a new Community Hub, where staff and service users across the charity meet to partake in diverse social events. Latest activity was "Just Pool-ing Around", at the local All Stars Snooker and Pool Hall. 7 teams of 2 each, 1 staff member and 1 service user per team. The competition was friendly but fierce and with an unblemished record of 6 wins out of 6, Majid and Colin were victorious! Soon in February there will another game of Football – and it will be the Hub’s, 4th match. The Hub is great because it includes staff and service users of all ages and abilities. Creating confidence and helping to build networks

STAMP OUT SOLITUDE CAMPAIGN (SOS). We are raising money towards Community Hub activities, and to end loneliness for adults with complex needs. So far we have raised £87.00 from a raffle at Christmas Party,. Please read article link.

VLOGS FOR SERVICE USERS: In another initiative to understand support needs, we are starting Vlogs with service users to begin an insight into their lives, and support. Here is a sample video featuring Sam, who lives at Cintre In-Via Supported Living Service.

MP Karin Smyth Visits Ablecare's Hengrove Lodge

AbleCare Homes Hengrove Lodge were very pleased to welcome their local MP, Karin Smyth, in September for a visit to the home.  The visit was part of the MP's programme of getting out and about in her constituency to meet people from all walks of life. 

The MP was interested to hear about the care home market in Bristol and specific issues faced by residents in a care home. Sam Hawker, Company Director, said ‘It was so positive for Karin to take this initiative.   It is very easy for the voices of older people in residential care to be over-looked. 

After a tour of the home with the Registered Manager, Teresa Silverthorne, Karin met with residents and their families.  Karin spend time talking to the residents and taking an interest in their lives.’ 

Filming Karin's visit, Made in Bristol TV also came along.  Yaz Cooke from topical news programme, The Crunch,  spoke with residents and undertook an interview with residents Dot and Barbara.  Dot said it had been her lifelong wish to be on TV, this visit enabled her to fulfill that dream! 

Another "Outstanding" assessment for Manor Community

We are pleased to share the great news that St. Mary’s Residential Care Home has been rated overall Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission. This marks the third of our registered services to receive an Outstanding rating. Our staff have been brilliant, as represented by some of the comments in the report:

·       "My relative always sounds very cheery when I phone."

·       "You give security and attention and help with everyday life… my relative feels safe".

·       "I feel so relieved my relative has you all beside him". 

·       The registered manager and staff demonstrated a determined, positive commitment to people and would always go that extra mile in order to ensure they felt valued.

·       Empowering people and maintaining independence was paramount to the service and their approaches to promote this were innovative.

·       There was an emphasis on teamwork amongst all staff at all levels.

·       Staff were 'positive and proud' about what they had achieved as a team.

·       Staff were motivated and inspired to offer care that was kind and compassionate.

As you may know, Manor Community was started by specialist nurse Muriel Chester who died from cancer in 2010. We feel this is a testament to the excellent care she gave and which we continue to develop.

The report should be published here


Residents of AbleCare Homes threw a fab party at Hengrove Lodge for their neighbours to celebrate #thebiglunch and National Care Home Open day on Friday 16 June 2017.

 They also joined the event with their fundraising for Alzheimer’s Society Cupcake Day, a national campaign to raise funds for the valuable work of the society and raised £106.  Lots of support was also provided by Growing Support, an award winning social enterprise whose community volunteers tackle loneliness and the effects of inactivity for people with dementia.    

All the residents came together to welcome children from the local community to decorate cupcakes, get to know each other and enjoy some delicious food.  The benefits of older and younger people spending time together include improved confidence and self esteem, reduced feelings of loneliness and isolation and enjoyment of opportunities to learn and share experiences and ideas.  As you can see from the pictures when our residents and children come together having lots of fun is usually on the agenda too!   The staff team at Hengrove Lodge got involved with some coming in on their day off.  They told me that residents who usually chose not to participate in group activities joined in and had a lovely afternoon.

Hengrove Lodge is one of the first care homes to take part in the Big Lunch - a national community event celebrating community and connections. They had so much fun they're hoping to do it again!  The event was also featured on BBC Radio Bristol.

Since the event a week ago we have arranged another visit from Southern Links Children’s Centre who have told us they have had parents commenting on Facebook that they would like to do a similar visit with their children...a fantastic result, their post was seen by over 1,200 people!  We all intend to use this event as the start of something much bigger that everyone can continue to enjoy.  The organisations involved have all been sharing pictures and stories and the response from the community has been fabulous.

Well done everyone!


Dave from Owl Occasions tells us: Here at Owl Occasions we bring our Owls and Birds of Prey to you!

During a visit to a Care Home I show off the beauty of our birds whilst giving an interesting and informative often two-way talk lasting 1 hour or so, I usually bring between 1 to 3 birds with me for you to see up close and personal!

The visit always stimulates interest, most people love Owls which are the usual birds taken to retirement and Nursing homes. We enjoy showing off our birds while at the same time educating or being educated by the clients (I always regard education as a two-way process) which includes details about the specific bird, its habitat and suggestions as to how we can improve our countryside for these magnificent birds. The format may be called 'Show and Tell type presentation' with input from both clients and staff.


I appreciate some clients are unable to respond directly but their eyes tell a different story, those that are often relate to their younger days when out an about seeing an Owl on a local farm or wild place. As you can see from these pictures at Ablecare

I try where possible to give the clients the opportunity to get up close and personal (even hold our owls) and have their photograph taken by the care staff to treasure for ever. 

As a retired Intensive Care Charge Nurse and Army officer, I see the value of bringing our owls to visit you. I have frequently been told that the clients talked about the visit for weeks afterwards. This is a great way to stimulate them in what to some is a closed environment. It is not only the clients that enjoy our visit the care staff themselves are as interested in the birds as everyone else.

I look forward to home visits to create an entertaining and educational visit for the clients and staff alike. I have numerous revisits on an annual basis and am often remembered by the clients and staff as the ‘Owl Man’ a term which is often used by children when I go on school visits.

You can reach us at


With the June 8th General Election looming, Manor Community (CQC outstanding) realised that clients needed help it they were to exercise their right to vote 

and came up with this exciting initiative which they would like to share with the wider Care Community.

Sophie Chester-Glyn, from Manor says that it is really important that everyone, regardless of their disability is able to exercise their right to an opinion, their right to vote.

They have created this booklet which seeks to help service users understand the election process, what their rights are and what they need to do to vote. At the same time they are helping their staff to help their clients and offering support services.

This is a very new departure and Sophie would really like feedback on the booklet, whether it helps, whether you use it, how useful you find it......

You can e-mail Sophie on


Congratulations to Manor Community for their second 'Outstanding' assessment from CQC, this time for their home care service. Manor director Deian Glynn commented: 

“To have another one of our services rated as Outstanding is an amazing achievement.  We are extremely proud of all the team for their continued commitment and dedication to all those they support.”

This represents an additional triumph for the registered manager of the service Stacy Ibiks-Ibikunle who was last year's Care & Support West winner in the home care registered manager category.


Shaun Hill of 'Homes Caring for Autism' won the Care Home Worker Award and Bethany Lawrence of 'Able Care' won the Best Newcomer Award at the finals of the Great British Care Awards, held in at the International Conference Centre in Birmingham on 31st March. 

Trophies were presented by Martin Kemp, the Spandau Ballet musician and EastEnders actor, at the ceremony and gala evening.

Richard Smith, the founder and managing director of Homes Caring for Autism, which has its head office in Weston-super-Mare, said:

“This award recognises the significant role of the care home worker in consistently providing a high-quality standard, for people living in residential care, and it provides well-deserved recognition of the commitment that Shaun has shown to the people he supports.

“It is particularly fitting that Shaun was nominated by the mother of a young autistic man whom he has cared for over the past eight years.

“An enormous difference can be made to autistic people with a learning disability by understanding their needs, and enabling them to reach their full potential, and it is through workers like Shaun that we are able to make such a difference in our homes.”

Shaun, who is 27 years of age, started working with HCA as a support worker in May 2009. He became a shift leader in February 2013 and a senior support worker in July 2015.

AbleCare Homes Company Director, Sam Hawker, said

"We are so proud of Bethany, to be the National Care Home Newcomer winner is a fantastic achievement. 

"Bethany started work at Frenchay House as an apprentice and has developed so quickly; she is a natural.  Her category was not only for apprentices but for people of all ages, from all walks of life, who are new to care.  Bethany’s victory will spur us on to get our nominations for the Care and Support West Awards completed. ’ 

Left to right: Steve Walls (GBCA Host and compère), Professor Martin Green OBE (Chief Executive, Care England), Shaun Hills, Martin Kemp (musician and actor)

Left to right: Steve Walls (GBCA Host and compère), Professor Martin Green OBE (Chief Executive, Care England), Shaun Hills, Martin Kemp (musician and actor)


John Bennett, CEO at regional charity Cintre talks about how they have invested significantly in technological solutions during the last three years as part of its major overhaul of processes and systems. 

Wi-Fi and Adaptive Technology:

All service users at its locations have their own WiFi system and access to adaptive technology as required. Cintre predominantly works with service users who are of the tech generation with tablets and smartphones in abundance. Investment in technology now forms part of the person centred approach.

On-Line Surveys and Reporting from Care2Improve

Other tech investments include web based and on line customer satisfaction surveys of service users, families, professionals and its own staff through the Care2Improve package. This has been operating for over two years and has been very successful in independently assessing the quality of service delivery and benchmarking the charitable activities.

Bio Metric Log-In

The introduction of bio-metric (finger print) logging in and out of all staff at all of its locations to provide real time data for management and payroll, web based real time quality control systems for its policies and recently the inclusion of CCTV in one of its supported living services. The latter to be rolled out across all locations in 2017.

On-Line Data Access

The charity trustees have also been subject to the major investment with all governance and board data now accessed directly on line from the trustees own web-based secure area available whenever and wherever they want.

Meeting Local Authority Needs

Local authorities and similar agencies are moving to a variety of software and web based solutions for monitoring and commissioning and it is a sign of the inevitable future for the sector which has been traditionally beset with paper driven systems that often prove difficult to scrutinise or difficult to obtain up to date data for more speedy information based decisions.


C&SW member Manor Community had even more reason to be cheerful this month as they picked up the first OUTSTANDING assessment in the area for their care home catering for people with mental health needs.

Registered Manager Debie Vowles, picture below at the November General Meeting commented "I just think about the service users; what have I got in my life that they don't have and how can I help them to have that too."  

The Outstanding assessments were for "Caring" and "Well Lead". Director of Manor Community Deian Glynn, was particularly pleased with the positive reference to membership of C&SW of which he is also a director.

Here are the CQC details for the areas in which  they were judged to be outstanding:


The views of people were sought in a way that was informal, relaxed and tailored to their individual needs.

This demonstrated a person centred ethos and creativity and, ensured any barriers to effective communication were overcome.

They used a sensitive approach that respected people's cultural backgrounds and mental health needs. We found during our visit that spending time with people andtalking about things important to them, was an approach they were more familiar and comfortable with and enabled us to assess their experience of the service more effectively than asking more direct questions. Staff supported this and introduced us to everyone individually and explained why we were visiting.

The registered manager listened to people and staff to ensure there were enough staff to meet people's needs. They demonstrated their responsibilities in recognising changing circumstances within the service and used a risk based approach to help ensure that staffing levels and the staff skill mix was effective.

Staff had the knowledge and skills they needed to carry out their roles effectively. They enjoyed training and sharing what they had learnt with colleagues. Staff were supported by the provider and the registered manager at all times. The service complied with the Mental Capacity Act 2005 (MCA) and Deprivation ofLiberty Safeguards (DoLS).

People received a varied nutritious diet, suited to individual preferences and requirements. Mealtimes were flexible and taken in a setting where people chose. Staff took prompt action when people required access to community services for expert treatment or advice. Staff had a good awareness of individuals' needs and treated people in a warm and respectful manner. It was evident that they were committed to the people they supported. The registered manager and staff were knowledgeable about people's lives before they started using the service. Every effort was made to enhance this knowledge so that their life experiences remained meaningful.

People received appropriate care and support because there were effective systems in place to assess, plan, implement, monitor and evaluate people's needs. People were involved throughout these processes. This ensured their needs were clearly identified and the support they received was meaningful and personalised.

Regular monitoring and reviews meant that referrals had been made to appropriate health and social care professionals and where necessary care and support had been changed to accurately reflect people's needs. People experienced a lifestyle that met their individual expectations, capacity and preferences. Everyone involved in this inspection demonstrated a genuine passion for the roles they performed and individual responsibilities. They wanted to ensure that those living at the service felt safe and valued. Staff embraced new initiatives with the support of the registered manager and colleagues. They continued to look at the needs of people who used the service and ways to improve these so that people felt empowered to make positive changes.

Well Lead

The service works in partnership with other organisations to make sure they are following current practice. The organisation is a member of Care and Support West. The provider is also a director of the body and attends various board meetings and meetings regarding the current topics within the care sector. The registered manager is the lead manager of the Bristol Registered Managers Network, facilitated by Care and Support West. The registered manager is also a member of the National Skills Academy. Senior staff attend various workshops and seminars in relation to the care sector that are organised and attended by experts.

Last year the provider attended the Health and Care exhibition which is one of the biggest health and social care exhibitions run in the UK, they have registered to attend again this year. The PIR stated, "There are many speakers at the event and exhibitors. It has been a great way to ensure we keep abreast of the key discussion points, whilst at the same time experiencing and discussing new ways of working".

There were various systems in place to ensure services were reviewed and audited to monitor the quality of the services provided. Regular audits were carried out in the service including health and safety, environment, care documentation, staffing levels, training, staff supervision and medication. Action plans were developed with any improvements/changes that were required.

The registered manager and senior staff knew when notification forms had to be submitted to CQC. These notifications inform CQC of events happening in the service. CQC had received notifications from the provider in the 12 months prior to this inspection. These had all given sufficient detail and were all submitted promptly and appropriately. We used this information to monitor the service and ensure they responded appropriately to keep people safe and meet their responsibilities as a service provider.


Staff had supported some people for many years. People were confident in their surroundings and with each other. We had several opportunities to see how relationships between the registered manager, staff and people was promoted and supported. Conversations were personal and reflected positive, respectful

interaction. You could see there were genuine friendships between staff and people that promoted an inclusive atmosphere. There was a sense of living together as an 'extended family'. Conversations were lively and people were informing staff what they planned to do that day. We heard normal everyday conversations for example, one person said they were having a lie in, someone said they wouldn't be home for lunch and another person said they would be making an appointment with their GP. Some people did not have significant family members. One support worker told us, "I do feel like a surrogate mum to one person and that suits me fine if it means they feel happy and loved".

Advocacy services were also available and had been used in the past. One relative we spoke with told us they were, 'very pleased with everything'. They said, "Staff are very kind and my relative is very happy here, everyone is very approachable and easy to talk with". We looked at the most recent completed questionnaires received from three relatives. There was a section that asked for their views about the care and support people received. It was evident they were 'very satisfied and grateful' and they named staff and thanked them personally for their support. Comments included, "We are very pleased with the service provided", "Great success in dealing with needs admirably, and I am very grateful" and, "We are always welcomed by staff on duty". Scores for all individual questions were rated as 'good' and/or 'excellent'. One relative recently wrote to the home thanking the staff for visiting their daughter during a short stay in hospital. They commented, "You all do a fantastic job here with the residents, it's always a pleasure to visit".

Staff morale was positive and they were enthusiastic about the service they provided. We asked them what they were particularly proud of and what went well. Comments included, "I'm always proud of individual's progress and the sense of achievement for them and for us", "I see very caring staff who support people to follow their dreams", "There is a strong sense of an extended family unit where we do all we can to make people feel special" and, "We respect people's diversity and individuality". Staff saw their role as 'supportive and advisory', whilst respecting that people must 'make their own decisions even if they make mistakes and learn from them'.

Throughout the inspection we saw various examples where acts of kindness and care had a positive impact on people's lives and wellbeing. The registered manager and staff demonstrated a determined, positive commitment to people and would always go that extra mile in order to ensure they felt valued. Staff supported people as equals; their approach was respectful and patient. It was evident that over time staff had built up positive relationships with people that were based on trust and personalisation. They wanted people to feel important and live a life that was meaningful and fulfilling. The registered manager and staff provided us with an extensive background of people's lives prior to living at the home and it was evident they knew people well. This had helped enhance a person centred approach to care and support where people could aspire to achievable goals and aspirations.

The registered manager and staff promoted a delegated support worker role. The registered manager explained how it was essential to match the right member of staff with the right person to ensure the support worker role was meaningful for people. All staff completed a 'staff profile sheet' which helped best match the client to a staff member. They considered personal preferences and interests, age, personalities and experience and the partnering was reviewed to ensure they remained effective. Examples included shared interests in sport, religion and hometowns. One staff member explained that sometimes people 'just clicked' with certain members of staff and were more 'responsive and engaged' with others. One relative we spoke with said their son's support worker was, 'very good with them' and the relative was 'very grateful'. They told us their son's progress was 'very much down to the relationship between the support worker and their son'.

The care and support provided was developed around 'Compassionate Care (Seager 2006)', the concept of which is to focus on creating a secure and psychologically healthy, caring relationship between staff and individuals.

Whilst staff remain professional they show empathy, understanding and compassion in the spirit of a homely environment which gives individuals confidence to take positive risks, become independent and recover, knowing that a safe and caring environment awaits them. There was a real sense of an empowering culture for people who lived at the home. Independence and autonomy was promoted at all times and was at the centre of all care and support people received. It was never assumed that people who moved to the home would stay on a permanent basis. Support pathways were developed with individuals and relevant professionals to support phased progression for the potential to live in an alternative independent community setting. The registered manager and staff recognised individual capabilities and worked on strengthening these.

Two people had recently successfully moved from the home into supported living. This was a testament to the drive, patience and commitment of everyone in the home who had supported them and made this happen. One person wrote to the home and said, "Thank you for letting me live here and for all your warm welcomes. All the staff were very nice, bless you all".

Other examples were shared where people and staff had felt proud of individual successes around independence and being in control. One person had previously found it challenging when managing their own money. They often spent it very quickly and then ran out before their next allowance was due. Staff educated the person about the value of money and the advantages of budgeting and saving. Over time the person had adopted these principles and they had started to save money so they could treat themselves to something nice. This approach had also helped people to appreciate the value of personal effects and how much they had cost.

The ethos of the service was that people should be afforded every opportunity to live a normal life and enjoy those things that everyone has a right to. Ideas and initiatives to support this were constantly thought about and discussed with people and amongst staff. This year people had said they would like the option to consider short breaks or holidays abroad. This was evidenced in the monthly 'house meetings' minutes. To do this they would require passports and no one currently living in the home had one. The registered manager spent a considerable amount of time and dedication supporting individuals to apply and obtain passports. During this process it was identified that some people didn't have the required documents and they had to apply for these in addition. This included birth, marriage or adoption certificates. Although the implications of applying for passports had not been anticipated the registered manager continued their efforts with the applications as promised. They were delighted to share with us that a small group of people had enjoyed a mini cruise this year and plans were being discussed for future trips out of the country. The whole process had been an extensive piece of work. The registered manager and staff should be congratulated on their continued efforts to overcome obstacles and achieve the desired goals for people they supported.

There was a strong, visible person centred culture and people were supported, encouraged and provided with information that helped them to express their views and opinions and make decisions. One example of this was the EU referendum, were people had been helped to understand the choices available and some of the implications. Following which they were supported to cast their vote.

Another person had recently attended a hospital appointment and met with their consultant to discuss the treatment and aftercare they would be receiving for an operation. The registered manager spoke with us about how they helped the person understand the implications and potential risks when having a general anaesthetic and balancing these against the positive results the operation would provide. This approach had increased the person's awareness so they could decide whether to proceed with the treatment or not. During the consultation the registered manager had noticed that the consultant was talking to his patient through the registered manager rather than directly at them. The registered manager pointed this out to the consultant and asked them to speak directly to the person. This was a good example where the ethos of empowerment and promoting equality and people's rights was paramount and supported at all times.

The PIR stated, "Person centred care is not only based on current support needs and wishes but also looks toward the future". This would include choices and preferences around people's wishes should they become ill, require end of life care in addition to what arrangements they would like when they die. The registered manager spoke with us about how they helped to raise awareness about these decisions and how people had been supported; this was also confirmed in people's care records. There were examples where people had been assisted respectfully and sensitively. This included one person who had been recently supported when making decisions about whether to receive treatments following a terminal diagnosis or whether to consider alternative palliative options of care provision. Two people had also recently expressed a wish to make plans for their funeral and they had chosen what they wanted to wear, the hymns they wanted and, who they would like to perform a reading. Another person was being supported to write their last will and testament.

Families and friends were kept informed and involved with the service by producing quarterly newsletters. These were available in the home and sent to family members especially to those who were unable to visit regularly. The newsletter provided information about significant events with photographs and future plans for the coming months. The introduction of the quarterly news letters in 2015 had received positive comments from people who used the service. These were being further developed to help improve existing satisfactory methods of communication with 'residents, family, friends and staff'. The PIR stated, 'The newsletters will improve communication around key policies and highlight how everyone can be further involved in the running of the home and support community events'. Personal invites were sent to families and friends so they could join in any celebrations or events. 


Cintre is undertaking an exciting campaign aimed at raising resources to provide specialist health and fitness opportunities to vulnerable adults who Cintre supports.

Cintre supports adults with autism, behaviours that challenge, mental health and learning difficulties, to enable them to gain a more independent life.

Now, take your time and imagine. You’re a vulnerable adult with a learning disability and mental health issues. You have limited means to health and fitness opportunities to improve your overall well-being.

Having a mental health problem can put you at higher risk of developing serious physical health problems and prolonged mental illness? Risks such as:

  • Twice as likely to die from heart disease
  • Four times as likely to die from respiratory disease
  • Shorter life expectancy of 10-17 years

Two thirds of deaths and prolonged illnesses are avoidable. In fact many of these deaths are caused by poor diet, poor exercise, poor social conditions and not the right support.

The adults we support experience barriers which prevent them achieving their peak well-being. But with the right provision these barriers and risks can be prevented.

Many people do not realise that well-being activities are difficult to access for people with behaviours and conditions that challenge. There are additional support requirements and for those that cannot afford to, it costs them worsening health and mental health issues.

To combat adults developing serious physical health problems and prolonged mental illness, I ‘Richard Luck’, one of the registered managers within Cintre, will be undertaking a ‘Dalai Lama’ trek through some of the toughest mountain ranges in North India for 10 days to raise funds.

I am asking all our suppliers to join me along with our supporters in making a donation this Christmas to help make someone’s New Year and long term life a healthier one.

Suggested donations:

  • £100-250 will provide a series of one to one sessions with a specialist personal trainer.
  • £300-450 will allow for in-depth health assessments and corresponding bespoke individualised fitness plans.
  • £500-1000 goes towards specialist adapted gym equipment and supported specialist activity/outbound holidays.

If you would like to make a donation you can via the official Virgin Money webpage at

All donors will be thanked and promoted via our social media channels.

Please visit:



Thank you! 


The theme National Carehome Open Day in June this year was Celebration; residents and staff at WindmillCare’s Osbourne Court in Stoke Gifford, chose to celebrate the Olympic Year of 2016.

The Olympic ‘Flame’ was lit at 1100 with a closing ceremony at 1600 – our favourite guitarist Rob Cook got us into party mood the official opening ceremony; Rebecca Haselhurst was the star of the Closing event.

In between there was some gentle, though serious competition with internationally selected teams which made an interesting and slightly different day for us all at the home