We’re delighted to report that Dawn Briggs reached the final of the National Learning Disabilities and Autism Awards 2017 in the Support Worker of the Year Award.
Dawn started work at The Richardson Partnership for Care in 1995 as an Administrator and Co-ordinator/ Activity Support Worker, soon becoming an integral part of the home, developing relationships with service users.
To care means genuine concern for others, to listen, empower, be adaptable, dedicated and have integrity. Dawn has all of these attributes, most of all she is sociable, compassionate and good natured. She is dependable and responsive to people’s needs, wants and aspirations.
An essential part of Dawn’s ethos is her interpersonal skills, enabling her to relate to service users and understand individual’s differences. On many occasions Dawn has gone the extra mile to help service users, which demonstrate her strengths as a carer.
Here is just one example of Dawn’s supportive and compassionate nature and we are very proud to have her as part of our team.
In the early years, one service user in particular, named Denise, started becoming close to Dawn. In 1998, Dawn invited her into the office for coffee. When Denise showed an interest in photocopying, Dawn was patient and took time to show Denise how it worked. After a couple of months Denise felt confident to start using the photocopier.
Denise has now been working in the office with Dawn for 19 years and Dawn has become an integral part of her care. She has supported Denise with her personal care, medical appointments and shopping trips, as well as making her feel valued in her role in the office. Dawn is never phased by Denise’s, at times, ‘colourful’ behaviour, and calmly, verbally de-escalates any anxiety that Denise feels, which has enabled her to live a more fulfilling life.
Dawn is now the most significant person in Denise’s life, which can be illustrated by a situation recently when Denise became critically ill with a life threatening condition. After being admitted to the local hospital, she was transferred to an ICU ward in an induced coma, in a specialist neurological hospital in another county.
Dawn took time out of her day to travel to the unit, where she spent time talking and reassuring Denise’s family: her mother, sister and brother.
Dawn also sat with Denise, talking quietly about their 19 years. In fact, Dawn was the first person that Denise asked for when she woke from her coma, and Dawn was there.
Thank you letter
And this is the letter that Denise’s sister wrote to Jackie Mann, Registered Manager at Denise’s home:
“I wanted to drop you a line to tell you again what wonderful people you all are for looking after my beloved sister Denise, and I would like to personally thank Dawn who is like a second mum to my sister. She has given her the time and patience to learn new skills while working in the office with her and helps Denise with all her personal needs, which is a difficult task with Denise. And recently, with Denise’s stay in hospital, Dawn went above and beyond for Denise. I could see the bond they have, which was wonderful to see. The first person Denise asked for when she woke up from her coma was Dawn. Please pass on my thanks to her for caring for my sister, which she does flawlessly, and to you and all your wonderful team.”
My warmest regards,
Mrs Karen Bence