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Q&A with…Wayne Brant

Q&As from Wayne Brant, The Ness Hub at Chudleigh Manager.

How did you get involved in Dementia Care?

My grandmother had dementia so I fully understand the impact it has not only on the person, but also the immediate family. Because I spent a lot of my career with large corporate companies where the goal was chasing profit, I really wanted to make a change and help people, so the Ness, as a social enterprise geared towards helping our members and families, seemed an ideal fit.

What do you love most about working for The Ness?

That’s an easy one – the people. Both the team I work with and the members we look after are so lovely it makes coming to work a pleasure.

Tell me a memory that makes you smile whilst you have been working here…

There are so many good moments, but typically they revolve around when a member shares treasured memories from their lives, such as their Wedding day or their children growing up. By getting to know our members well, we can really tailor the experience to their needs and likes. Our members often have great pieces of advice. I remember a keen golfer saying to me “sometimes you end up in a bunker, but you are still out in the fresh air in the beautiful countryside”. A great mantra to live by – try and enjoy every moment.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

The first part of the day is always about preparation. As a team we have our 8.30 morning meeting to get ready for the day so we all know who we are looking after, what our objectives are and how to achieve them. The day really starts when our members arrive. Sociability is a key to engaging people and making them happy, so we often take our groups out for coffee, chat and quizzes at local hotels. Eating well is also a key to maintaining health so a good lunch is always high on the agenda. For the remainder of the day we use a range of physical and mental activities to ensure that we are getting the maximum benefit from the day. When I am not with the members, there is always paperwork to catch up on and the usual activities associated with running a hub.

What is your personal motto or mantra?

Work hard but if you are having a good time, all the people around you will be as well.

How would your family describe you in 3 words?

“Thinks he’s funny”! Seriously though I think they may say “caring, compassionate and dedicated”.

You can read more of our Q&A’s over on our blog here or head over to Facebook for the latest updates and news from our centres.

Ness Dementia Hubs from a student Occupational Therapists perspective

Siobhan has recently completed her 3rd and final placement with us here at The Ness Care Group and will soon qualify as an Occupational Therapist. As part of Occupational Therapy Week #OTWeek23 she wanted to share her experience of the importance of engaging in occupations.

I have really enjoyed my time at The Ness, getting to know people, their life experiences and supporting them to participate in activities that are meaningful to them has been incredible to witness. However, as the first student to undertake a placement at The Ness, there were some initial challenges, but with the support of a wonderful mentor and team, I was able to overcome and learn from these experiences.

The best part has been when someone has been hesitant to attend a session and then they leave with a smile on their face, having had a nice day. That is what has made this placement worthwhile. Alongside learning more about Dementia and working with a team of dedicated people. It’s amazing to witness the passion the staff have at The Ness for supporting individuals to live a full life.

Occupational Therapists play a vital role in supporting individuals living with Dementia and share very similar values to us here at The Ness. OTs help to bridge the connection between where someone is and where they want to go, proving that with the right tools and home adaptations anyone can live well with Dementia.

And for what we do at The Ness, well, we support people to maintain their cognitive function, social engagement and independence to enhance wellbeing and quality of life, whilst building confidence to re-engage in those occupations that may have been lost for whatever reason.

Interested in becoming an Occupational Therapist or finding out more? Amy, our Occupational Therapy Lead is here to answer any questions you may have [email protected]

Q&A with…Amy Williams

Q&As from Amy Williams, The Ness Hub at Exmouth Manager.

How did you get involved in Dementia Care?

I had my final OT placement on Devon Partnership Trust’s only organic ward – Belvedere. I spent three months here and really enjoyed working with this client group.

What do you love most about working for The Ness?

The clients, their stories and finding things that make them smile!

Tell me a memory that makes you smile whilst you have been working here…

Too many to tell – they happen on a daily basis. We are very lucky.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

Where do I begin?! There is no typical day, and that’s why I love it. Every day brings something unique, as everyone who enters our doors is unique. It definitely keeps you on your toes!

What is your personal motto or mantra?

Be kind. Always.

How would your family describe you in 3 words?

Never you mind!

You can read more of our Q&A’s over on our blog here or head over to Facebook for the latest updates and news from our centres.

Q&A with…Lisa Ward

Q&As from Lisa Ward, The Ness Outreach Manager.

How did you get involved in Dementia Care?

Around a 10 years ago (a whole decade), I began my career in dementia care. My first job was at a residential home that catered to individuals suffering from this disease. Initially, I was unsure why I was drawn to dementia care. However, over time, it became evident that I was passionate about learning more about the disease and supporting those affected by it. My goal was to educate individuals about dementia and ensure that those living with it are able to lead fulfilling lives.

What do you love most about working for The Ness?

We’re not your average team at The Ness – we’re more like a big, quirky family! We take pride in our cozy culture where everyone is treated like a VIP and we put people before tasks. Our approach may be a little different, but we’re pretty sure it’s the secret sauce to our success. Supporting individuals and learning about their stories is a gratifying experience for me, and I’m sure it’s the same for the rest of the team.

Tell me a memory that makes you smile whilst you have been working here…

Thinking of one is challenging but there’s this moment that never fails to brighten my day. I remember helping a lady achieve something she thought was out of reach. Seeing her face light up with happiness as she nailed it was simply unforgettable. It’s moments like these that make life worthwhile!

What does a typical work day look like for you?

I’m a jack-of-all-trades! I can either be in the office, nailing down schedules and paperwork, or I can be in the field, supporting folks to live their best lives.

What is your personal motto or mantra?

My approach is empathetic, patient, and caring. I strive to nourish the spirit and validate emotions, meeting people where they are.

How would your family describe you in 3 words?

Outspoken, caring, thoughtful

You can read more of our Q&A’s over on our blog here or head over to Facebook for the latest updates and news from our centres.

Q&A with…Anne Bilham

Q&As from Anne Bilham, The Ness at Teignmouth Manager.

How did you get involved in Dementia Care?

I first became involved in dementia care when I became a manager of a residential care home in Banbury, Oxfordshire in 1991. Since then, I have worked in various health and social care settings, private providers, housing associations as well has a number of charities. I have been responsible for managing a range of services from traditional day services to fostering type services where the older person with dementia lives with a family.

What do you love most about working for The Ness?

I’m naturally curious and my role at the Ness means I get to spend time talking to guests finding out about their lives. I love being a leader to a dedicated group of staff.

Tell me a memory that makes you smile whilst you have been working here…

Singing Nina Simone – Ain’t Got No – I Got Life, with a group of ladies. Especially the line, I got my boobies.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

Catching up with all members of the team to make sure everyone is feeling confident and in a position to offer the best service we can. Greeting and making guests welcome. Office work. Having lunch with the guests, chatting about how things are going, things they would like to see, things that make them happy. Office work. Saying goodbye and helping with tidying the centre.

What is your personal motto or mantra?

Hear people, value and empower them and let the magic happen.

How would your family describe you in 3 words?

Naturally happy, always finding solutions, positive.

You can read more of our Q&A’s over on our blog here or head over to Facebook for the latest updates and news from our centres.

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