Dedicated care worker Liz honoured with a social care Oscar

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A dedicated community care worker with a heart of gold has scooped a silver award in the care industry’s ‘Oscars’.

Home care worker Liz Vickers, 58, took prize at this year’s prestigious Wales Care Awards, held at City Hall in Cardiff. Run by Care Forum Wales, the national awards aim to recognise the hard work and dedication of those in the care sector.

Liz was nominated for the Outstanding Service Award, sponsored by the Silvercrest Group, for her work with Chepstow-based Lougher Home Care.

Speaking about her silver award, Liz, who lives in Chepstow but originally hails from Barry, said her nomination had come as a total surprise.

“I was really shocked to be chosen as I’m just an ordinary carer who works with an amazing team,” she said. “But I am so chuffed and hope it raises the profile of caring and carers.”

Liz originally turned to domiciliary care work after working as a night domestic at Chepstow hospital, where she realised the highlight of her job was the time she spent chatting to the patients.

Her natural ability to put patients at ease eventually led her to become a home care worker, where she has been making a difference to the lives of her elderly clients and their families for two decades.

And after a year break to care for her own mother Gladys before she passed away aged 91, Liz said the experience further strengthened her commitment to supporting people at home.

“Caring for my mother reinforced to me just how important it is to provide the best end of life home care,” Liz explained.

The mother-of-two, who has worked for Lougher Home Care for the past two years, said one of the best parts of her job was just taking the time to chat to her clients.

A regular walker in the Forest of Dean, she uses her passion for the outdoors as an ‘ice-breaker’ with clients and often brings her experiences of nature into her visits.

“A good way to engage with my clients is to tell them the changes I have seen out in the forest and to share with them my love of being outdoors,” Liz said. “And it is a lovely way to simply share and talk.”

The dedicated care worker was put forward for the Wales Care Awards by her supervisor, Martine Metcalf.

“She demonstrates a kind and heartfelt attitude to end of life care and cares deeply about the people she cares for, explained Martine. “For us at Lougher Home Care, Liz is a fine example of what a modern Social Care practitioner should be.”

Congratulating Liz on her award success, Mario Kreft, chairman of Care Forum Wales, said the standard of entries for this year’s Wales Care Awards was extremely high.

“There are only winners here tonight so it is only fitting that the finalists will receive a gold, silver or bronze Wales Care Award.

“I trust that they will continue to inspire those around them as role models and encourage others to aspire to even greater heights and in the months and years to come.

“This awards ceremony is our opportunity to pay tribute and to celebrate the talent and commitment that is improving the quality of life for thousands and thousands of people throughout Wales. We take our hats off to them.”