| 22 April 2020
Summary: During these challenging times, our frontline teams continue to deliver services for those who need them most. This week we spoke to 18year-old Care and Support Worker Ellie Wattam, based in Chesterfield, Derbyshire to discuss how Covid-19 has impacted her work at Hassop Close, a residential service for people with learning disabilities.
Please tell us a little about yourself and your role.
Ever since I was old enough to remember I always wanted to work in the care sector, particularly in adult care. Providing care to the best of my ability just feels like second nature which is probably why work feels like home. I started my role as a Care and Support Worker at Hassop Close in December 2019 and currently support and assist four wonderful older ladies with learning disabilities.My role involves supporting customers with their daily activities, from personal care to assisting with finances and booking appointments. Other than daily activities, the most important part of my role is ensuring the ladies are safe and feel comfortable in their own home.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
What I enjoy most about care is the joy it brings to our customers knowing they are happy and safe and always have their dignity. So far, my journey has been very positive but also challenging as there’s so much to learn. Although I may have only been here just over four months, I feel as though I have learnt so much and my knowledge just expands more and more each day.
What is like being on the frontline and how has Covid-19 impacted your role?
The Covid-19 outbreak has not only been challenging for staff, it is also very unsettling for our customers, as this is something none of us have ever had to face before. One of the main challenges we have faced is trying our best to maintain a positive atmosphere for everyone.Covid-19 has impacted my role and there have been some changes to how we work to avoid the spread of the virus. This includes extending shifts, to try to minimise the cross over between staff. I think we have become extra vigilant which is of course necessary during a time like this.
How do you stay connected with your team during this time?
We keep connected during this time by phone and messages between colleagues and managers daily. We also have a communication book that we have always used, however, since the Covid-19 outbreak more messages are being passed through, as it is important for staff to be updated with the latest protocols.
Do you have any memorable moments that have occurred since Covid-19 you would like to share?
Each day is a new story here, but a memorable moment which I will always remember happened a couple of weeks ago when all four ladies and staff were feeling a little down due to the awful circumstances. I decided to order them a slice of chocolate cake or a flapjack to try to bring some joy to their day, which was a success! In the end, they had huge smiles on their faces and it was more than enough to bring joy to the whole staff as well.