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The Willows maintenance man wins care award

May 23rd 2018


A Saltburn maintenance man who works at The Willows has received an Unsung Hero award from the publication Caring Times for his work brightening not just the paintwork but the residents’ lives too.

John Evans was nominated by home manager Julie Gregory for the way he uses his day-to-day activities to engage with the residents.

Julie said: “When John does his daily walk around the home, he encourages the residents who used to enjoy doing DIY to join him. Men living in care homes sometimes miss feeling useful. John may ask someone to hold his bag while he is working or he may ask them to pass him a tool or spirit level. Sometimes he may just give them a tool to hold as he works, or he will get them to tick off boxes on his daily work sheets as he completes tasks. 

“This participation unlocks memories and you can often hear people chatting to him about the jobs they used to do. It is wonderful because they feel engaged and useful.”

This is John’s second award this year, having been named Care UK’s Maintenance Person of the Year from the 117 homes across the country.

He said: “I didn’t know I had been nominated for the Unsung Hero Award, so it was a complete shock when Julie told me.  It’s nice to know that my work is appreciated and doesn’t go unnoticed. 

“I really enjoy my job and spending time with the residents and their relatives. I spend a lot of my time carrying out safety checks and ensuring there are no hazards to residents. I also take time to ensure the decoration is spotless: this is the residents’ home and I want it to look as nice as possible for them.

“I am very close to my own grandparents and I am proud to work in a home where residents are cared for in a way people would want their own family treated.” 


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The Willows care home in Middlesbrough now provides expert general nursing care as well as residential and nursing care for older people living with dementia. Our care team focuses on making every day different for residents. This can include watching performances from local entertainers, enjoying days out, and even sharing special dinners with loved ones.

The Willows
Woodside Resource Centre
Cavendish Road

0164 2034 173

  • Dementia care
  • Nursing care
  • Residential care
  • Nursing dementia care
  • Respite care
  • End of life care