The Foundation, Founder Patron of the cross-sector Championing Social Care initiative, was delighted to play a key role in celebrating the first ever Care Home Open Week.
Care Home Open Week, an exciting new programme delivered by Championing Social Care, ran from June 28th – July 4th and saw over 500 care homes across the country participate in virtual and/or socially distanced events to celebrate care home workers, their residents and highlight the contributions that care homes make in their local communities.
To support the Week, alongside colleagues from CareTech plc, the Foundation hosted two key high-profile events.
Visit by Sir Ed Davey MP to Hill House School
On July 2nd, Sir Ed Davey MP – Leader of the Liberal Democrats – visited Hill House School in Hampshire. Hill House School, part of CareTech plc’s Cambian Group, is a 52-week residential provision for boys and girls with a diagnosis of Autism, severe learning difficulties and associated behaviours. Led by school Principal Kate Landells, Sir Ed had a tour of the facility in the New Forest, meeting staff and pupils of the school.
Sir Ed Davey MP stated:
“Hill House school, and so many other similar schools across the country, are vital community assets, that enrich so many lives – the work they do is inspirational and so important.
“For Care Home Open Week, the Liberal Democrats are calling on the government to bring forward immediate cross-party talks to fix the social care sector. This is the only way we can get the reform we need to make life better for communities, carers and the people they care for.””
Sir Ed’s visit also included a demonstration of SmartBox, which joined the CareTech Group in 2020. Through innovative text and symbol software and market-leading hardware, Smartbox helps disabled children and adults have a voice and independence. Earlier this year, Smartbox and CareTech plc launched their first collaboration called ‘100 Voices’, a 12-month pilot bringing care and technology together to improve outcomes for people supported by CareTech plc services.
In addition, Sir Ed was able to learn about Arc Pathway, an online platform that helps parents to better understand, develop and enhance their child’s learning and development. Arc Pathway’s easy to use software not only gives parents and teachers a deep understanding of a child’s development, but also provides tailored learning pathways that work.
Hill House School is equipped to deal with the needs of a variety of students with a range of abilities, both academically and with communication. The school focuses on communication and social skills, with a strong emphasis on self-management and independence. Alongside an academic curriculum, Hill House offers students a calm, consistent, eclectic approach to meet their individual needs. The school prides itself on flexibility within structure and works hard on building a non-aversive, positive approach. The school supports students to become confident, independent learners that are encouraged to encounter, engage and explore. The school is rated ‘OUTSTANDING’ by Ofsted.
Visit by Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP to The Oakleaf Group
On June 30th, Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP – Shadow Minister for Mental Health – visited the award-winning Oakleaf Group to visit residents of the neuro-rehabilitation centre in Hartwell. Part of CareTech plc, The Oakleaf Group has been delivering neuro-rehabilitation to men for over 15 years, during which time the service has grown significantly to become one of the leading providers of neuro-rehabilitation in Northamptonshire. Specialist services are supported by the highly-skilled multi-disciplinary team, providing a seamless rehabilitation pathway.
Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP, who also serves on the Advisory Council of the CareTech Foundation, met staff and residents, as well as observing an outdoor physiotherapy session from the resident specialist. She met with Kathy Swannell, Clinical and Operations Director, who talked to the Shadow Minister about the service offered to residents with brain injury and neuro-rehabilitation needs. Dr Rosena also met with Dan Gordon, Deputy Operations Director, who talked about their current residents, their rehabilitation pathways and success stories.
Dr Rosena Allin-Khan MP said:
“The last year has been incredibly difficult for the social care sector, which makes Care Home Open Week even more poignant this year. It has been fantastic to see the services available at Oakleaf and to say a huge thank you to the team for all of their hard work over the past year.”
Foundation CEO and Vice-Chair of Championing Social Care, Jonathan Freeman MBE, commented:
“Social care is provided in so many settings up and down the country, playing a key role in the fabric of local communities. Care Home Open Week is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the contribution of care homes and connect local people with them. I am delighted that, alongside colleagues from CareTech plc, the Foundation was able to host these important visits.”
You can see the video of Sir Ed Davey’s visit below: