Our Amazing People – Linda Donnellan-Beevers and Penny James
This magazine issue, we have two more shining examples of Avery staff who have shown resilience, determination and dedication to their roles.
Linda joined Avery in March 2011 and during that time has been a Home Manager at several of our care homes, including Acacia Lodge, Priory Court and Scholars Mews, most recently settling at Amarna House in York on 1st September 2017. She is well-known at Avery for her clinical excellence, the support she gives across the company and her hands-on attitude.
Linda is a pure clinician at heart, taking pride in coaching and teaching at all staff levels. Her exceptional management skills foster positive team spirit, maintain best practices and work to up-skill team members. In Linda’s last CQC inspection, where Amarna House achieved ‘Good in all Categories’, the report stated: “Staff said that Linda made [them] feel more confident in [their] role”. There are even some staff who, under Linda’s encouragement, are now pursuing higher education within health and social care too. This is a testament to the positive working environment Linda has set and how she is perceived as a role model.
“Linda is always willing to help and support other homes and has a determined resilience I have rarely seen in my career. She doesn’t think twice about getting her sleeves rolled up,” said Maria Booth, Regional Manager, “She’s even cleaned the grooves of the lift doors with a toothbrush and has been known to have completed a long day-shift in 4-inch heels to cover last minute staff absence!”. Just one example of this was when Linda drove a 360-mile round trip to cover a shift at Priory Court when they were a nurse short on Guy Fawkes Night last year.
She has fostered trusting relationships internally and externally with visitors and professionals. Sarah Fiori, Senior Quality Lead at NHS Vale of York CCG, said “[Linda] demonstrates all the 6 C’s that every nurse should work to; she is compassionate, caring, courageous, competent, committed and communicates well.”
Penny is a Care Assistant at Avonmere Care Home in Bristol, joining the home in April 2018 and has literally gone the extra mile for our residents this winter.
During the spell of exceptionally cold weather this January, the local area experienced freezing temperatures, with snow and ice closing roads and making for treacherous conditions. Whilst residents were kept warm in the care home, some staff were snowed in and unable to make the journey – but Penny didn’t let that stop her!
Penny wrapped up warm and left her house at 6 am to walk the 4.5 miles in the icy conditions, arriving at 8:10 am to start her shift.
“It’s absolutely remarkable. When she arrived, I gave her a big hug to thank her, but all she was worried about was being 10 minutes late!” said Janet Welsh, Home Manager at Avonmere Care Home. “Penny is hardworking, reliable and very caring and this certainly proves her commitment and dedication.”
Lisa Soper, Operations Manager South, said: “Penny’s dedication is a great example of going above and beyond and always being willing to help. She’s a real credit to the team at Avonmere.”
Article by Helen Bates, Marketing Executive, for Welcome Home Issue 9.