In the week the NHS turned 70, Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust hosted its annual You’re A Star Awards on the 6 July 2018. The birthday themed evening recognised the achievements of extraordinary Care Trust staff and volunteers, the everyday heroes, that have gone the extra mile to support local communities.

The red carpet was rolled out to welcome guests to the Mercure Bradford, Bankfield Hotel, where, during the Oscars style ceremony, dedicated staff and volunteers from across the district were recognised across five award categories and the winners were revealed. This year’s categories included Innovation and Quality, Working Together, Non-Clinical Star/s, Unsung Hero and Improving Patient Experience.

The You’re A Star Awards showcase the very best examples of outstanding care across Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven.  Now in their fourteenth year, the awards are the highlight of the Trust’s calendar.

Nominations came from colleagues across the Trust and many were among the guests in attendance at the ceremony.

The event’s main supporter, Bradford-based Sovereign Healthcare, provided £1,000 to the winner of each category to support their ongoing work to benefit patients.

Short films highlighting nominee achievements were screened as part of the ceremony to showcase the work and quality of care delivered by Trust staff and volunteers over the past 12 months. Some included heartfelt testimonials from patients and carers.

Chair of Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, Mike Smith, paid tribute to a wide range of healthcare professionals and volunteers across the Trust which included community health, mental health, children’s voluntary and central services.

Mike Smith said: “In this the NHS’ 70th anniversary year, there has never been a better time to recognise the extraordinary care our dedicated staff and volunteers deliver every day, often going above and beyond to ensure that people that use our services get the best possible care. Our annual awards recognise these remarkable people and it’s right that we come together to pay tribute to these healthcare heroes.” Mike also extended his thanks on behalf of the Trust’s Board to Sovereign Health Care and all other organisations that made the event possible, both during the year and on the night, and congratulated and thanked all nominees for their hard work and dedication.

Ruth Wood, Occupational Therapist

The winner of the Unsung Hero Award Category went to Ruth Wood, an occupational therapist at the Care Trust’s Dementia Assessment Unit, who always puts patients at the heart of care.  She was noted by her colleagues on the ward for her ability to ‘make a real connection’ with the patients that she cares for and for often going above and beyond to help make patients stay as comfortable as possible by supporting with a range of meaningful and engaging activities.Commenting on winning the award, Ruth said: “It is wonderful to have been nominated for this award and to have won – I am humbled and delighted.”

Grainne Eloi, Interim Head of Mental Health ServicesThe winner of the Working Together Award Category went to Grainne Eloi, Interim Head of Mental Health Services, who has been working together with the local authority, police and voluntary sector agencies to improve urgent and emergency mental health crisis support for vulnerable people that had resulted in people being cared for closer to home, with no out of area placements over the last three years.

Commenting on how it felt to have won, Grainne said: “What a lovely acknowledgement of what we have done as a collective, I am delighted to have won the award and to be recognised for the work that we do – it is absolutely amazing!”

Estates and facilities team

The winner of the Non-Clinical Stars Award Category went to estates and facilities who are known for their customer focus and ‘can do’ attitude in delivering essential support to staff across the Trust, including consistently providing high quality, responsive services on the wards. An example of the team’s dedication and commitment can be demonstrated earlier this year when, during adverse winter weather conditions, the team worked tirelessly outside of their typical work hours to grit roads and paths during heavy snowfall to ensure continuity of high standards of care.  This involved a whole team effort with colleagues going the extra mile to ensure that all grounds and facilities were operational for the wards across the Care Trust.

Speaking on behalf of the department, Paula Ottley, Facilities Integration and Development Manager said: “We are thrilled to have won the award – it is outstanding recognition for the estates and facilities team.”

The specialsits palliative care team’s Belinda Marks, who heads up the team

The winner of the Improving Patient Experience Award Category went to the specialist palliative care team, dedicated to providing peaceful and dignified end of life care for the patients in the community that they support.  The team is noted for their amazing ‘can-do’ attitude to ensure patients get the services they need. The dedicated and committed team often go the extra mile to provide compassionate, person centred care.

Belinda Marks, who heads up the palliative care team, speaking collectively on behalf of the team, said: “We all get a massive buzz from making a difference to people’s lives and you only have one chance to get it right – so this award goes out to all the patients and families that we support.”

Annette Whomack-Brown, Activity Coordinator

The winner of the Innovation and Quality Award Category went to Annette Whomack-Brown, an activity coordinator at Lynfield Mount Hospital whose innovative idea and infectious enthusiasm to open the Four Seasons Café at the hospital, has led to patients and their families having a non-clinical space to spend quality time together, out of the ward environment.

The arts themed ‘therapeutic café’ has been a resounding success with patients and their families, enhancing the quality of visiting times.  The non-clinical space has been developed in consultation with the patients that use the facilities, from naming the café, right down to the artwork, created by patients, that adorns the walls.

Annette Whomack-Brown, speaking about being recognised at the awards, said: “It’s fantastic to be acknowledged in this way and I hope that it will inspire other people to come forward with ideas that can hopefully make a difference to the patients we care for.”

Videos of the winners and finalists at work can be found at: www.bdct.nhs.uk