A care assistant who went above and beyond at a care home, a support worker who used arts and crafts to enhance people’s lives, and a residential child care worker who moved in with vulnerable children during lockdown are among the 12 extraordinary care workers recognised as Care Stars who shone brightly during the past 15 months in Wales.
Care Stars 2021, organised by Social Care Wales, was created to shine a light on the social care and early years workers who have made a truly positive difference to people’s lives during the past 15 months when the whole country struggled with the challenges of the pandemic.
In June, employers, colleagues and members of the public were invited to nominate the paid care workers they felt deserved to be recognised for their work over the past 15 months.
As a result, 120 care workers from across Wales were nominated. A panel of judges, made up of Social Care Wales Board members and representatives from partner organisations, then whittled them down to the 12 Care Stars they thought deserved widespread recognition for the inspirational work they had done.
Sue Evans, Chief Executive of Social Care Wales, said: “People working in social care and early years make a crucial difference to people’s lives day in, day out in communities across Wales.
“During the past 16 months, that crucial difference they make really did shine through more than ever. Our care workers stepped up under extremely challenging and difficult circumstances to show just how vital and valuable they are. All 120 care workers nominated showed kindness, dedication, and professionalism in the work they did. This was not about winning awards because all 120 nominees and everyone else working in the care sector during the past year and a half have been outstanding in their response. But the judges chose the ones they thought represented the most shining examples of care and support provided during the pandemic.
“A huge well done and thank you to all our Care Stars – their stories are humbling, moving and inspirational, and show just how incredibly dedicated they are, not only to their profession, but to the people and the families they support.
“I’d also like to say a big thank you to everyone working in social care and early years in Wales. We know there are so many other people who’ve gone above and beyond just like our Care Stars – they’re all stars and a credit to our communities. The professionalism and dedication shown by our workforces in a time of such adversity is simply astonishing.”