FOLLOWING the launch of a new book giving an insight into experiences of homecare workers a Welsh care provider has said its carers are extremely valued in their profession because of the work they do (August, 2017).
Abacare, an award winning care company that provides care across Wales, says its care workers can create a career for themselves and make a difference to the lives of the service users they look after.
Peter Angelides, CEO at Abacare, said: “Stories of Care: A Labour of Law by Lydia Hayes gives an insight into the experience of homecare workers, based on extensive interviews with staff in the sector, revealing they feel underfunded, overstretched and undervalued, but we whole heartedly disagree that this is the case with all care workers as we pride ourselves on the fact that our employees join us with the intention of making a career for themselves, feel very valued in their job and make a real difference to the people they’re caring for.
“We have some carers who have been with us for more than 10 years and some that have been working in the industry for 20+ years.
“Some of our carers are the only face a service user may see all day. They bring a smile to the most vulnerable people in their community and the relationship they build is invaluable.”
One of Abacare’s Community Carers was recently awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Care Heroes Awards.
Eira Evans, who won the Lifetime Achievement Award, said: “I would recommend working in the care industry to anyone who might be thinking about it. I love the feeling of helping people to remain at home, surrounded by family and friends where they belong.”
Abacare provides all its employees with a comprehensive training schedule, which includes a company induction, dementia awareness, enablement, first aid, health and safety, food safety, infection control, medication, person centred care and moving and handling service users.
It also offers the Qualification and Credit Framework (QCF), formerly known as National Vocational Qualifications, to all team members who show commitment, reliability and passion.
Peter added: “Many of our carers who join us as a Community Carer work their way up the ranks to become management and so have involvement in policies and contracts and are always listened to by Directors when big decisions are made. They are also able to bring up any care worker’s concerns and make sure they are listened to. We offer a great support network for all of our staff should they have any problems or worries at all.
“The book also mentions that the majority of care workers are female, which is certainly true, however we have many male carers in our company and they act as ambassadors for us, encouraging other men to get involved in the care industry and break down stereotypes.
One male carer that works for Abacare is 28-year-old Wayne Humphreys.
He said: “Many people believe that care work is more suited to women as they’re seen as the more kind and caring gender, but I want to break this stereotype as myself and other men in general are extremely kind and caring too.
“I want to encourage other men to consider taking up a position as a carer as it is an extremely fulfilling job and they can really help make a difference in their community by caring for the elderly and people with dementia and other life-limiting illnesses.
“By having male carers for male service users, we’re also helping to prevent many from being very lonely. Loneliness is a ‘silent epidemic’ among men in Britain, with more than one in three feeling lonely at least once a week according to the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness.”