Winners 2016

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Awards Slideshow

  • Beyond-the-Call-of-Duty
  • Care-Professional-of-the-Year
  • Care-Team-of-the-Year---CREST
  • Care-Team-of-the-Year
  • Chairmans-Award
  • Collaborative-Working-Award
  • Dementia-friendly-Service
  • Health-Professional-of-the-Year
  • Outstanding-Customer-Experience
  • Outstanding-Neighbour
  • Outstanding-Project-Delivered-in-the-Community
  • Primary-Care-Service
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Awards Ceremony Video



Award Winners 2016


Chairman's Award



Care of the Elderly Team, Solihull Hospital

Judges said:

"This organisation has featured quite prominently in this year’s awards.  Individuals from this department have been recognised as finalists.  The department itself has been named as a finalist in one of our categories.

In the words of their nominator, they are amazingly kind and caring, extremely professional, and that ranges from Staff nurse Katherine Roberts, Dr Susan Powell and all the other nurses and the doctors - to the extended team of community nurses, occupational therapists and physiotherapists – they even do home visits!

I and the whole awards judging panel were truly humbled to hear of what is going on, day in, day out, at this organisation - work which is truly above and beyond the day job, so we had no hesitation in deciding that the 2016 Chairman’s Awards should go to the Care of the Elderly Team, Solihull Hospital!"



 Outstanding Neighbour

Sponsored by the Solihull Observer


Steven & Tina Hands

Judges said:

"Just two years ago Steve and Tina Hands introduced monthly get-togethers for the local residents.  These coffee mornings have expanded into wine and quiz nights, summer barbeques and Christmas get-togethers.  Friendships have blossomed, neighbours look after one another, and the older generation have been welcomed with open arms.  As one nominator said – there were four individual nominations for Steve and Tina – “I feel blessed to live in such a street, and I’m proud to have them as my neighbours."




Collaborative Working


Collaborative Working for Solihull Rehabilitation Pathways

Judges said:

"A real collaborative effort.  Involving Heart of England Foundation Trust physiotherapists, Solihull Active, Parkwood Community Leisure Team and patient volunteers.  What started out as a pulmonary rehabilitation initiative has proved so successful that it has expanded into classes for patients with multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.  Patients have become volunteer buddies supporting new patients entering the classes.  It’s an example of a partnership approach that supports local people with complex health needs, undertaking rehabilitation that supports patient self-management.  A worthy winner."



Outstanding Project delivered in the Community

Gro-Organic Community Interest Company 
Judges said:

"Commissioned by Public Health, Gro-Organic has created a replica World War 2 Victory Garden in the heart of Chelmsley Wood. The aim of the garden was to help vulnerable people with mental health problems and families living in poverty to improve their physical and mental wellbeing while learning how to grow, harvest and cook their own food, grown from seed.

The plot of land, noted as an area for anti-social behaviour, has now been transformed into a thriving community garden which has been built by local residents under the leadership and management of Sarah and her team. The garden now supplies fresh fruit and vegetables to elderly residents living in isolation and families who find the cost of vegetables too expensive and is open to anyone in need of food to pick for free on "Free Food Friday".

Numerous testimonials have been received about individuals whose lives really have been transformed by the project.  Gro-Organic has gone further than asked or expected by introducing new projects involving supporting refugees and introducing healthy cooking sessions for local children.  A true outstanding project delivered in the community!"



Outstanding Customer Experience


Solihull Connect

Judges said:

"Solihull Connect helps and supports over 600,000 customers each and every year. That can be face to face at their walk-in centres across the borough, by telephone, email or social media. On-line, there’s even a ‘Live Chat’ button should the customer want more assistance. Solihull Connect is about providing help through a range of channels that suits the customer, and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Whether it’s an enquiry about adult social care, waste collection or lots of different issues at once, their dedicated and committed multi-skilled advisors are there to help – for the people of Solihull and anyone vulnerable or in need of help – true outstanding customer experience."




Dementia-friendly Service


Enhanced Care Team, Solihull Hospital 

Judges said: 

"Solihull Hospital’s Enhanced Care Team has been brought together to provide the specialist care and support that their most vulnerable dementia patients need, often with high levels of emotional need and complex behaviour.  Working with such people on a day to day basis can be exceptionally hard, but one to one care is both a challenge and a privilege for the Team, providing activities and building close relationships with family members.   Last Christmas the team, out of their own pocket, paid for presents and mini-parties for those patients who wouldn’t be home for the festive holidays bringing huge amounts of joy for their patients. Truly remarkable."




Beyond the Call of Duty 

Joint Winners: 

Emma Francis, Aviary House & Becky McGann

Solihull Community Housing Wellbeing Service

Judges said:

"Emma Francis was nominated by a fellow worker who a year ago was homeless. Here are their words: “I was a young person living in Solihull when I found myself homeless, depressed with nowhere to live. I was allocated a support worker called Emma who changed my life. She helped me cook, clean, look after myself, maintain a job, go to appointments and basically changed my life forever. Now I have a job here and I can give back to young people what she gave to me and hopefully change lives – the way she changed mine”. Truly remarkable!"

"Becky McGann is a duty officer at Solihull Community Housing’s Wellbeing Service. While on duty one Sunday, the monitoring centre received an alert from one of Becky’s own clients asking for a drink of water. The call seemed strange and Becky was concerned about her client. With her care instincts taking over Becky decided to go out and visit him, even though it didn’t seem to be an emergency situation. An independent person, her client said everything was ok, but was then violently sick. Becky called the Emergency services who diagnosed a stomach ulcer with high blood pressure. Had it not been for Becky’s intervention, her client could have suffered a heart attack. He is now fully recovered and back at home. But without Becky’s intuition and action, it could have been an entirely different story."




Primary Care Team


Next Steps: Living Well with Dementia, Memory Assessment Service, Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust

Judges said:

"Next Steps – Living Well with Dementia provides access to appropriate, effective post-diagnostic support, an essential part of a person’s dementia journey to promote psychological wellbeing and self-management. Open to newly diagnosed patients and family members Next Steps have run two events in premises provided free at Solihull Fire Station and at the Methodist Church in Solihull.  A range of local community services have come together to promote understanding and information about what is on offer in an informal ‘market-place’.  As well as informing patients it has been a great way for professionals to network and collaborate.  A great initiative."   




Care Professional of the Year

Joint winners: 

Andy Warmington

Joanne Mackinnon

Judges said:

"Andy Warmington of Inclusive Sports Academy Community Interest Group was nominated for his achievements in involving disabled people in sporting activity.  Enthusiastic, patient and optimistic were three of the phrases used to describe him.  From Boccia sessions for disabled people at Solihull Indoor Bowls Club, to sports sessions for people with learning disabilities at Bacons End Day Centre, to sports sessions for the elderly at Phoenix House, Shirley, to archery sessions for adults with learning difficulties at Parkview day centre, the man is never still.  On top of this he works as a support worker with adults with learning difficulties at SOLO, making a big difference to some of the most vulnerable people in the community.

Joanne Mackinnon has been chief executive of the Welcome Project for over a decade, a charity dedicated to helping solve substance abuse.  From a two person organisation it has flourished into a 24 strong organisation with a caseload of over 500 people at any one time.  With significant repeat funding from the National Lottery, it is now established as part of the partnership that forms Solihull Integrated Addiction Services, providing triage for the NHS across the whole borough of Solihull in respect to alcohol and substance abuse.  Joanne has been described as an inspirational leader, motivator, and relentlessly positive in the face of difficulties.  Another worthy winner."       




Health Professional of the Year


Dr Reema Swarna, Associate Specialist Doctor, Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust  

 Judges said: 

"Nominated for her tireless work and commitment to serve the people of Solihull  in the field of dementia diagnosis and early intervention, Reema’s nominations – yes there were two – were centred on her skill, commitment and passion for ‘getting it right’ for people living with dementia. 

Despite an extremely busy clinical schedule, she brings tremendous energy to her work and is seen as an inspirational leader, committed to improving patient care.  Always weaving evidence into practice, she has made time to support a number of additional initiatives, thinking nothing of working outside normal working hours. 

And on top of all that she is a movie star launching a DVD for the Hindi population explaining dementia.  The nomination comes with the complete backing of the whole Memory Assessment Service, all her medical colleagues and the Clinical Director for Dementia & Frailty – well done Reema."  




Care Team of the Year (Joint Winners)

Aviary House Home Group

Community Rehabilitation Enablement & Support Team (CREST)

Judges said:

"Aviary House is a new scheme of 28 one-bedded flats which opened in May last year.  Most of the residents moved there from Ipswich Walk which was a mental health residential care home.  The nomination has come from many of them personally, praising the hard work and patience of the staff there, in ensuring they feel happy and safe in their new environment. 

They really appreciate the fact that Aviary House is different from living in their own flat in the community, and value the staff being around 24/7, inspiring confidence in them to do things for themselves.  Staff are now also helping residents to identify personal goals such as going to college, volunteering, getting a real job, and looking at how they can give something back to the local community.  As one resident said “Everyone looks out for each other – it’s like a big family!”  A far cry from the mental health establishments of years gone by.  Fantastic story.

The Community Rehabilitation Enablement and Support Team – CREST for short – supports adults in Solihull to access a wide range of activities aimed at achieving greater independence in the local community.  In the last 10 years, CREST has enabled over 200 adults gain a better quality of life such as accessing college courses, the local gym, gaining confidence with on-line shopping.  The CREST team have close links with the Stroke Association, Age UK, DIAL, Solihull Community Housing and CAB ensuring the adults they work with get access to support when it is needed.  In the words of one adult, “I can’t thank CREST enough for what they have done for me  - I waited a long time for things to be done – but CREST did it no bother at all!” 



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