Together towards Tomorrow – Northern Devon Care Homes Team Annual Conference 2018 (Fri 21 Sept)

On World Alzheimer’s Day join the Northern Devon Care Homes Team for their annual conference, Together, towards Tomorrow. The focus of the day is Dementia Care, with many interesting speakers and opportunities to network. Free refreshments and a buffet style lunch will be provided.

North Devon Hospice will offer a drop in session on symptom management along with the Pathfinder team on the Trusted Assessor model during the lunch break in addition to exhibition stands offering advice on a wide range of products and services.

A raffle will be drawn at the end of the day (we are raising money for a local charity)

Fri 21 September 2018
08:45 – 17:00 BST

Filleigh Village Hall
EX32 0RS

Book here

Agenda for the Day:

08.45-09.00 Registration and Refreshments

09.00-09.10 Welcome and Housekeeping Andy Cox, Compliance & Content Manager, Workforce Development. NDHCT

09.10-09.15 Working in Partnership Darryn Allcorn, Chief Nurse, Honorary Associate Professor. Northern Devon Healthcare Trust (NDHCT).

09.15-10.00 ‘Somebody I used to Know’. Wendy Mitchell – Author, Living with Dementia

10.00-10.45 Sexual Intimacy in Care Homes. Dr Dawne Garrett, Professional Lead, Care of Older People and Dementia Care. Royal College of Nursing (RCN)

10.45–11.15 Break/networking viewing of exhibition stands

11.15-12.00 Nursing in Care Homes. Sharon Aldridge-Bent, Programme Manager. Queens Nursing Institute

12.00-12.10 An Introduction to Trainee Nurse Associates. Andrea Bell, Deputy Director of Nursing. NDHCT

12.10-12.15 Why we are Trusted. Pathfinders Team. NDHCT

12.15-12.20 Resources and support available. NDHCT Library

12:20-12.25 Health & Social Care Learning Opportunities. Ruth Morgan, Distance Learning Curriculum Learner Support. Petroc College.

12.25–12.30 Introduction to Seating and Posture. Seating Matters

12.30-13.30 Lunch and viewing of exhibition stands. Hospice drop in/symptom management. Trusted Assessor drop in/sign up

13.35-14.20 Position Well and Move More for pressure prevention – how to recognise sitting and lying positions that help reduce risk of pressure damage. Lucy Clark, OT Living Centre, Vanessa Markwick, Moving & Handling Trainer. NDDH

14.20-15.20 The Arts and Dementia – How and Why they work so well. Dr Claire Garabedian Researcher – Creative Arts and Dementia, Association for Dementia Studies. University of Worcester.

15.20-15.40 Break/networking

15.40-15.50 Feeding at Risk. Bev Snowdon, Speech and Language Therapist. NDHCT

15.50-16.20 Dying of Boredom. George Coxon Owner/Director – Pottles Court and Summercourt Care Homes, Independent Health and Social Care Consultant, Chair of Devon Care Kite Mark, Specialist Mental Health Advisor – Cogora, UK wide Chair of the Mental Health Nurse Association

16.20-16.30 Presentation of Best Practice Awards and raffle prizes to winners. Chair Person

16.30 Close and Summary/Evaluation. Chair Person


Traffic disruption in Barnstaple: Tour of Britain – Monday 3 September

Traffic disruption in Barnstaple: Tour of Britain – Monday 3 September

The annual Tour of Britain cycling race is coming to North Devon this year, with the Devon stage of the race finishing in Barnstaple on Monday 3 September.

There are going to be road closures in the area, which will impact travel around North Devon.

The race organisers have advised us that delays are likely between 12 noon and 4 pm, and they advise against driving into Barnstaple town centre during the afternoon.

Please take note of the route and the road closures planned and ensure any travel arrangements take into account that your journey may take longer than usual.

Route and road closures

The race will start in Cranbrook (east Devon) at 11.00am and the timings of the later parts of the race have been estimated. The key locations to be aware of are:

  • South Molton (Pannier Market): 1.20pm
  • Swimbridge: 1.36pm
  • Landkey: 1.40pm
  • Barnstaple: 1.44pm
  • Bratton Fleming: 1.56pm
  • Combe Martin: 2.20pm
  • Ilfracombe: 2.33pm
  • Woolacombe: 2.47pm
  • Challacombe: 2.52pm
  • Croyde: 2.59pm
  • Braunton: 3.09pm (final stretch is along the A361)
  • Finish: Barnstaple, The Strand: 3.24pm

The full route is available to view here:

The Strand in Barnstaple will be closed for the whole day. The rest of the race will be managed using a rolling road closure system. This means that roads will only be closed for the time it takes for the race to pass (usually a maximum of between 15-30 minutes).


Devon Cares providers make finals of Outstanding Care Awards 2018

Congratulations to all our care providers who have been shortlisted in a number of categories for the Outstanding Care Awards for Devon and Cornwall 2018. Many providers have been shortlisted – they are all italicised below.

Devon Cares has also been shortlisted in the Quality Provider category.

We’re looking forward to the awards ceremony on Friday 8 June – good luck to all the finalists!

Community Support Award

Emma Ellis – Windmill Community Centre
Pat Harris – HealthWatch – Torbay
Rowcroft Hospice
Neighbourhood Friends

Outstanding Community Manager

Peter Hughes – Home Instead Senior Care
Laura Atkinson – Home Instead Senior Care
Maddie Bird – Love2care
Caroline Sommerville – Bluebird care 
Kirstie Warren – Bluebird Care East Devon

Commitment to Training and Development

The Old Rectory – Southern Healthcare
Matt Williams – 3CP Training
Gillian Buxton Community of St Anthony and St Elias
Steve Dixon – Devon Safeguarding Adults Board
Norman Mac – Purple Angels

The Team of Excellence Award

Parkwood House – Southern Healthcare
Rawlyn House Cream Care
Hania Tasiemska and care team – Modus Care
Team Riverview Priory Adult Care ,
Coppelia House– Peninsular Care Homes
Barnhaven Care Home

Outstanding Care Home Manager

Carrie Kelf Pitts – Thornfield care Home
Sarah Marsh – Brandon Care LTD
Jo Spurle – Warberries Nursing Home,
Steven Todd – Vanehill
Karen Dykes – Mount Olivet

Outstanding Contribution to Care

Beckie Cox Falcare
Sheila and Brian Baker – Shared Lives
Louise Stephen – Feet First
Sarah and Rachel Mercy – Easy living care
Paignton & Brixham Community Nurses

Quality Supplier Award

Home Instead Exeter and East Devon
Devon Cares
Ocean Healthcare
3CP Training

Care Newcomer of the Year

Jonathan Hanbury – Atlas Respite & Therapy
Valentin-George Vazdoaga – The Manor, Stone-haven
Maddie Bird – Love2care
Lydia Hunt – Brandon Care – Hillside Care
Alex Mitchell – West Heanton

Health Care Assistant of the Year

Mark Glover – Torbay Hospital
Laura Goodman – West Heanton
Varsha Cannon – Warberries Nursing Home
Adrian Vale – Palm Tree Home Care
Vicky Pollitt – Kingsmount Residential Home

Care Home Activity Organiser of the Year Award

Kim Moran – Harbour Rise
Beverley Roberts – Keychange Charity
Stacey Johnson – Mount Olivet
Andy Cowling – The Old Rectory
Kayley Nowlan – The Manor Exminster

Care Champion Award

Gary Wearne – Primley Court Nursing Home
Maddie Bird – Love2Care
Emma Chalkley – Unicare
Frances Conelley – Cream Care
Sarah Taylor – Sarah’s Carers

Community Carer of the Year

Ann Owen – Quality Care
Tracey Denfhy Homelife Carers
Nicola Overington – Overington Care
Jill Peoples & Jason Reid – Shared Lives
Joanna Taylor – Palm Tree Home Care

Care Coordinator of the Year

Linda Wileman – Home Instead Senior Care Paignton
Jayne Wison – Home Instead Senior Care Exeter and East Devon
Lisa Jenkins – Homelife Carers
Alice Billows – Homelife Carers
Jessica Jenks – Homelife Carers

End of Life Excellence initiative

Rowcroft – Hospice at home team
Dr Georgina Walker – Rowcroft Hospice
SWAST – Cancer care team
Nicola Overington – Overington Care
Rapid Response – Mears

Dementia initiative Award

Mercedes Hughes – Home Instead Senior care
The Old Rectory – Southern Healthcare
Home instead Senior Care – Exeter &East Devon
The Team at Sefton Hall Nursing & residential home
Norman Mac – Purple Angels

Outstanding Deputy Award

Nikki Marsh – Sheridan House
Frankie Rowe – Bluebird Care Exmouth
Joanne Anderson – Love2care
Lynn Edmunds – Forge House
Amy Bennett – Thornfield Care Home

The Emergency Services Award

South West Ambulance service
Adam Hill – South West Ambulance service
Cancer Care Team – SWAST
Devon Freewheelers – Blood Bikes

The Peoples Award

Casmine Wilde – Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo
Sara Asghari – NHS
Christopher Smith – 4X4 Driver
Tom Wilson – 4×4 Driver
Sam Voaden – 4X4 Driver
Elliot Bear Van Lear – 4×4 Driver
Kyle Stewart – NHS

Catering Team of the Year

James, Kevin, Ben & Simon – Brandon care LTD
Jamie Stuckey – Warberry’s Nursing Home
Anna Gubanska and Lisa Turl– The Seaton Nursing Home

Care Assessor of the Year

Sarah Taylor – Sarah’s Carers
Kathy Southouse – Home Life Carers
Sarah Duller – Mears
Sharna Howard – Mears



Devon care worker represents success of Proud to Care Ambassadors in London

Stephanie Johnson, care worker from Time 2 Care, one of the care providers we work with, has been flying the flag for Proud to Care Ambassadors at an event in London.

Stephanie is one of 132 Proud to Care Ambassadors, who promote careers in health and social care in Devon by visiting schools, colleges, universities, and job centre and apprenticeship events. This network of health and social care staff was set up by Proud to Care Devon.

Stephanie, along with fellow Proud to Care Ambassadors, went to London to share Devon’s successful involvement in the national pilot for integrated health and social care ambassadors.

Representatives from several London boroughs attended and are interested in following in Devon’s footsteps.

There are some real positives from the pilot:

  • Health and social care providers in Devon have increased the share of the audience interested in a career in the sector by 23%
  • 82% of ambassadors have increased their confidence
  • 68% of ambassadors feel more motivated in their work as a result of being a Proud to Care Ambassador

HomeLife Carers recognised by fire service

HomeLife Carers, one of the providers part of Devon Cares, Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust (NDHT) and Devon Carers have been recognised for helping Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service by referring more than 100 people for their free Home Fire Safety visits.

A home fire safety visit usually takes approx. 30 minutes and the fire safety technician will offer specialist advice for your circumstances and sometimes be able to provide free fire safety equipment i.e.  smoke alarms, hard of hearing alarms etc. which can be fitted in your home if required.

Homelife began their partnership with the Fire Service in 2015, working together offering all service users a free home safety check. The training the Fire Service has offered managers and care workers at HomeLife Carers has been extremely beneficial to services users. The partnership is an example of a great success of professionals working together and supporting people to live safely in their own homes.

Jon Worsley, Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service group commander for North Devon, presented a certificate to celebrate 100 referrals to the fire service to staff from HomeLife Carers, NDHT and Devon Carers.


Jon said: “We are extremely grateful to our partners who help to refer people to keep them safe in their home.  Our partner organisations work with many people who we are not always aware of, so by working together it is in everyone’s benefit.”

Find out more about free fire home safety checks on Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue’s website.

HomeLife Carers is a tier 1 Devon Cares provider, working across northern and mid Devon. Find out more about our providers.


‘Amazing’ care workers recognised in local ‘New Year’s Honours’ list

Some of the most compassionate, skilled and dedicated care workers across northern and mid Devon have been recognised in an honours list.

The Devon Cares New Year’s Honours list has been put together following a call for nominations from local social care providers. It recognises the hard work and talent of care workers who have gone above and beyond over the past year and deserve recognition.

The list has been compiled by Devon Cares. Since July 2016, care providers and the NHS in northern and mid Devon have been working together more closely as part of Devon Cares, which is part of Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust.

Social care services support and enable people to live at home and in their local community by helping them with a range of personal tasks, such as washing, dressing, going to the toilet and shopping.

Nicola Rock, working across Bideford for Complete Quality Care

Nicola Rock was nominated by manager Kelly Cameron. Kelly said: “Nicola has worked with us for a number of years and has shown incredible dedication and hard work. Clients have said she brightens up their day and that she is truly an amazing carer, going well above and beyond the call of duty on a daily basis. One person told us recently ‘I would be lost without her’.

“She is a carer who genuinely cares and loves her job, which is very clear in her work. She deserves to be recognised, and I’m really pleased that we could do this through the Devon Cares ‘New Year’s Honours’ list.”

Tina Alford, working across Tiverton for Comfort Home Care

Tina Alford was nominated by manager Ryan Palmer. Ryan said: “Tina has worked tirelessly throughout 2017, achieving and working towards care qualifications and helping to cover shifts at short notice. She is an incredible asset to the company.”

Sophie Langmead, working across North Devon for Ark Home Healthcare

Branch manager Becky Foster nominated team leader Sophie Langmead. Becky said: “Sophie worked really hard over the festive period to make sure people got the care they needed. She picked up lots of extra shifts, including on Christmas Day, and she was on standby over the new year weekend too. She was brilliant.”

Linda Jones, working across Tiverton and Cullompton for Easy Living Care

Linda was nominated by her colleagues, who said: “Linda is a great asset to our care team and a long-standing member of staff. She always helps where she can and picked up extra last-minute shifts throughout the festive period, including on Boxing Day. She supports other colleagues and we are so proud to have her as part of our team.”

Shelley Macey, working across Barnstaple and Braunton for Better-Care Domiciliary Services Limited

Manager Joy Ryan nominated Shelley Macey. Joy said: “She is always so cheerful, which cheers up the people she cares for. Shelley always goes out of her way to help out, and she truly makes a difference to everyone’s day.”

Dot Turner, working across Cullompton for Helping Hands Care

Dot was nominated by managing director Rosemary Witherby, who said: “It is very hard to pick just one person to be nominated, but we have chosen Dot. Dot has been with us for seven years and is an excellent ambassador for social care. She is caring, professional, flexible and always works to a high standard, and we know her team and all of the clients that she supports at home think very highly of her.”

Mandy Pickard, working across Barnstaple, Bideford and South Molton for Chapter Care

Manager Helen Wilton-Love nominated Mandy. Helen said: “Mandy has worked for Chapter Care for four years and is a care worker alongside another job. Mandy has regular clients who love her dearly and she does her utmost to ensure that her clients are covered by a carer who knows them well. She is a real asset to our team.”

Zoe Raymont, working across Torridge for Pee Wee’s Personal Home Care Limited

Director Phil Duffy nominated Zoe for her outstanding work throughout the year. Phil said: “During the last twelve months Zoe has completed various care qualifications successfully, and she has often filled in at short notice to cover extra needs of our clients. We have received lots of very positive comments about Zoe from the people she has cared for.”

Alison Huxtable, working across Barnstaple for Homelife Carers

Operations director Sharon McNulty nominated Alison on behalf of the team and said: “Alison always goes above and beyond. Nothing is ever too much, and she always does her very best to support the Homelife team and the people we care for.”

Dawn Odgers, working across Tiverton and Cullompton for Dedicated Care

Dawn was nominated by her colleagues, who said: “She always goes above and beyond in her job role. She is very kind and caring and always willing to go out of her way to help others. One example of this is when one of our clients was waiting to be admitted to hospital one evening and although Dawn had finished work, she volunteered to go round to sit with her until the transport arrived as she didn’t want to be on her own.”

Janet Wade, working across Tiverton, Cullompton and Crediton for Guinness Care

Manager Leanne McCormick nominated Janet and said: “Janet is extremely caring, and will even check on clients when she has down time. The people she cares for speak very highly of her and tell us that they look forward to seeing her. Nothing is too much trouble for Janet.”

The care workers have all been presented with a Devon Cares New Year’s Honours certificate.

Tash Koerner, head of Devon Cares, said: “We wanted to celebrate the compassionate, diligent and motivated care workers that are supporting people at home across the county every day, so we decided to launch our very own ‘New Year’s Honours’ list.

“The nominations are all fantastic, and each care worker truly deserves to have their hard work recognised and celebrated.”

Devon Cares is the ‘prime provider’ for social care in northern and mid Devon, which means the service doesn’t deliver care directly, but works with a network of providers to organise and manage care. They aim to improve the quality of social care and the capacity of the local system to provide care to those who need it.

Tash added: “Looking back at 2017, Devon Cares organised over 3,000 packages of care, and approximately 90% of these were arranged within four hours. Most other care packages are arranged within two days. Since we launched in July 2016, the number of people awaiting packages of care at any one time is very low and on occasion, we have had zero people awaiting packages of care, which is a fantastic achievement and something we continue to strive for.”

Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust has joined Devon County Council and health care organisations across Devon to support the Proud to Care Devon campaign. The campaign aims to attract more people to the care profession by raising its profile and demonstrating that caring is a rewarding and worthwhile career choice.

Devon County Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, who has Cabinet responsibility for adult social care, said: “A successful social care service relies on a dedicated and hardworking team of paid care workers. We hugely value our care workers for what they do, and providers are always keen to hear from people who are considering a rewarding career in caring for others.”

For more information about starting a career in health and social care and any current job opportunities, visit


Devon County Council launched the Proud to Care campaign in 2015, with adult social care providers, health partners, employment specialists Skills for Care, volunteers and the Department of Work and Pensions.

More information:


Easy Living Care sets up memory board to remember and celebrate the people they cared for

In the Easy Living Care office in Tiverton, there is a board dedicated to the people they have cared for who have sadly passed away. On the board there are orders of service from the funerals attended by the care workers and there are also laminated balloons so that staff can write down their memories of that person, and share their thoughts and prayers.

Sharon Collins, registered manager at Easy Living Care, said: “We have the privilege of being invited into people’s homes to support them through what can be the hardest parts of their life. We are all taught professional boundaries and these are very important, but no one can just switch off feelings of emotion or help build a relationship with the people we care for at home.

“When a service user passes who meant so much to their loved ones, through our memory board we hope to remember them and share our support as a company and as care workers.”


HomeLife Carers celebrate with their first ever Carers Awards Event

HomeLife Carers has recently celebrated their first ever Carers Awards, recognising all those who have been champions in the eyes of their colleagues and clients.

Held in Exeter, the event was spread over two weekends, ensuring that sufficient cover was provided for clients in the community whilst allowing all staff to attend at least one of the evenings.

Around 220 people attended, celebrating the achievements of the team, which were split into five categories:

  • The Carer’s Carer
  • The Client’s Carer
  • Dedication to Service Award
  • Best Newcomer
  • Manager’s Award

John Griffiths, managing director for HomeLife Carers, said: “Whilst the events were held as an award ceremony, the evenings themselves were much more than this; this was a real opportunity for us, as an organisation, to say a massive thank you to all the care team for the dedication, support and loyalty they show to their clients.

“There are so many positive and incredible things which carers all do, and the awards were our opportunity to recognise and celebrate this. It really has been a wonderful experience for all involved and a fantastic way to celebrate the incredible work of all the team.”

HomeLife Carers is a tier 1 Devon Cares provider, working across northern and mid Devon. Find out more about our providers.


Devon Cares to exhibit at conference highlighting innovative projects

Devon Cares has been chosen to exhibit at a national conference that celebrates high-quality, patient-focused care.

The service is one of twelve initiatives that has been chosen to exhibit at the provider showcase at the annual NHS Providers conference and exhibition.

Devon Cares is an innovative new approach to domiciliary care, which acts as a bridge between health and social care, bringing together the NHS and local care providers. It is run by Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust, who don’t deliver care, but work with local providers to organise care and provide the framework, structures and governance to enable care providers to deliver high quality care in line with the Trust’s vision to support people’s health, independence and wellbeing.

Alison Diamond, chief executive of the Trust, said: “I am delighted that we have been selected to exhibit at the NHS Providers conference, which is known nationally as an event where NHS organisations can share learning, celebrate success and be inspired.

“Launching Devon Cares made us the first NHS trust to enter the domiciliary care market, and we are really excited to have the opportunity to share what we have learnt with other providers.”

The exhibit, ‘Devon Cares: An NHS approach to domiciliary care’, will show how the service benefits providers, NHS trusts and the public.

The service benefits providers, because by offering better conditions for care workers, including better training opportunities and the chance of career progression, the service can boost recruitment and retention in care by making it a more attractive sector in which to work.

This also benefits patients, because greater integration with existing health and social care services means the Trust can get people home more quickly, or on time, and avoid unnecessary hospital admissions, where possible.

There are four different themes in the showcase, and Devon Cares will exhibit under the theme of ‘Relationships’, which reflects how the service has strengthened links between the NHS and care providers to provide more joined-up care for patients.

The overall theme of the conference this year is ‘Fighting Fit’, which focuses on how NHS providers can stay fighting fit and continue to deliver world-class standards of care.

The NHS Providers conference is being held at the ICC Birmingham on 29-30 November.