Specialism: Learning Disability with a specialist understanding around autism working towards accreditation as communication specialists.
Details of Vacancy: Ground floor bedroom
Care worker Jo Stone is being hailed as a ‘star’ by the manager at the Dorset residential home where she works because of the transformation she has brought about – in her own time – to the gardens of Ivers House.
Christine Harris, service manager at Ivers, said: “We are in a rural location and our gardens are a precious resource for the people we support.
“Jo has been so generous in using her own free time to transform the garden of one of the four bungalows that stand in Ivers’ grounds, and she’s now well on the way to doing the same thing for a second.
“Her first garden makeover involved levelling the ground outside the sensory room of one of our bungalows, then installing seating and planting some lovely flowers and shrubs – she had a vision she wanted to achieve, and she’s certainly done that.
“All her colleagues and the people we support are so impressed and appreciative of her dedication.”
Ivers House in Marnhull, provides support for people with learning disabilities, offering a specialist understanding around autism including total communication for individuals who are non-verbal.
Members of the 60-strong staff team, many of whom have been in post for over a decade, support residents with on-site activities such as animal care and horticulture in the service’s three-acre grounds with day programmes tailored to meet individual needs.
Christine Harris said: “I not only want to acknowledge the fantastic work Jo is doing, but also to let people know about the tremendous dedication that characterises other colleagues – they honestly make me proud to work in the care industry.”
Christine gives as an example a four-strong team of carers - Karen Knapp, and Alex Sainsbury, Sue Bates and Sasha Daniel - who recently supported individuals from Ivers to enjoy a week away at a holiday park in Dorset, and then worked a normal weekend shift before departing for a second week away supporting a different group’s holiday in Devon.
“An intensive working period like that is very demanding, and obviously also impacts on colleagues’ personal lives, so we are immensely appreciative of their dedication – and so are the people whose holidays they make possible,” said Christine.
Members of Ivers’ team also demonstrate their dedication in the day-to-day person-centred support they provide, with individually-designed packages to enable people to develop and maintain their independence.
The people who live at Ivers are supported to have a significant presence in the community, with many of them being involved in vocational work locally, including recycling projects, tending the gardens of the doctor’s surgery and working in charity shops and a garden centre.
They are also supported to enjoy regular visits to the village of Marnhull, which is within walking distance, to use shops and pubs, as well as on journeys to nearby Shaftesbury and Yeovil.