Care home housekeeper cleans up at awards


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A Bridgend care home head housekeeper is thrilled to be making a tidy success of the career she loves after scooping a top award at the Wales health care ‘Oscars’.

Julie Michael who describes herself as ‘a cleanliness fanatic’ was over the moon to sweep up a prestigious bronze honour at the 2019 Wales Care Awards presented at Cardiff City Hall.

The delighted mum of two and grandmother to three says she is in her element when kept busy dusting, cleaning and facilitating an appealing environment. So she says to be rewarded with a gleaming accolade for doing something she loves was a double bonus.

The award was handed over at a glittering dinner and ceremony hosted by tenor and radio presenter Wynne Evans, better known as Gio Compario from the Go Compare TV ads.

Julie, 58, of Ogmore Vale, Bridgend, is Head Housekeeper at Anwen Care Home, Bridgend, part of the Caron Group, formerly known as Care Inn Ltd.

She says the urge to keep her surroundings as appealing, clean and comfortable as possible has been in her since she was a child.

She laughed: “I was never happier than when my mum would give me a dustpan and brush. It’d keep me occupied for hours.”

She described being head housekeeper at Anwen as her dream job and her  fastidiousness has not gone unnoticed by colleagues who say she goes the extra mile to ensure everything is spick and span for the individuals living with dementia who reside there.

Although her shift doesn’t officially start until 7.30am, she gets in at 6.15am every day and often doesn’t leave until well into the evening when she is happy the home environment is  as it should be.

Anwen manager Meriel John feels lucky to have Julie on her team and as a tribute to her commitment it was she who nominated Julie for an accolade at the Wales Care Awards 2019.

She said: “Julie has an ability to keep all aspects of her role running smoothly and even when the unexpected happens Julie deals with the situation in a calm, professional manner.

“She was an obvious choice for this award and the first choice of the team she works with. She is a lovely lady who works with compassion and understanding, is efficient and effective.”

The Wales Care Awards – a highlight of the social care calendar – recognise outstanding service and high standards of professionalism in the sector. Julie was among scores of nominees put forward from across the nation.

She took the bronze honour in the category for Commitment to Quality in Hospitality, sponsored by Hoop Recruitment and Power Direct.

She said: “I feel very honored to have had my name put forward. We have a great team at Anwen and it’s nice to think the hard work we put in is appreciated.”

When not at work she two loves to spend time with her daughters Danielle, 36, and Victoria, 33, and her three grandchildren.

She enjoys cycling and walking in the scenic hills around her home.

Mario Kreft MBE, Chair of Care Forum Wales, said: “There are only winners here tonight so it is only fitting that the finalists 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 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.”

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