Why it’s never too late to work in social care
Second year Occupational Therapy student Becky shares her placement experience at our care and nursing home Gloucestershire House.
At 40 years old, I decided to go back to university. My background is working with children from birth to 18 years old, some with varying abilities and disabilities.
During that time, I had the pleasure of working with some wonderful Occupational Therapists. One day I just thought: “I should be doing this.” So, I took a leap of faith and decided to enrol in an OT course at the University of the West of England.
As part of the course, I was given an opportunity to do a placement at a Leonard Cheshire care home. This was Gloucestershire House which supports adults with physical disabilities and neurological conditions.
I've enjoyed getting to know the residents
It’s been great to put my skills into practice. My daily life has varied at Gloucestershire House, from practical to personal. I’ve helped with everything from eating solutions to wheelchair assessments. I’ve really enjoyed getting to know the residents, what they want to achieve and what’s important to them.
During my placement, I had the opportunity to get stuck into some really enriching projects. Our Valentine’s Day coffee shop morning and activity day being one. I got to work with two amazing residents, Paula and Rachel, who currently volunteer at Leonard Lounge, the care home’s coffee shop. It was important for these two ladies to make the Valentine’s Day coffee morning special for everyone.
Instead of buying products like cakes and biscuits, we made them from scratch. This involved looking at recipes, creating shopping lists and buying ingredients. The morning had a brilliant response, and Paula and Rachel were so proud of all the hard work they had poured into it. It was amazing to be a part of it!
My time at Gloucestershire House has helped me develop my knowledge and skills. The whole experience is something I’ll never forget.
I've felt so supported
I’ve felt supported by the whole team during my time at Gloucestershire House. Not only that, but I’ve also learnt a lot. Here, we have a therapy team comprising Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists. Each person brings their own individual talent. Some staff have been here for years, and they know their residents so well. That’s what makes it home for them, and you can see how much of a difference it makes in supporting the residents in the best way possible.
My placement is over, and I’m returning to university to finish my studies. I’m hoping to qualify as an occupational therapist next year. I’m looking forward to seeing what life puts in front of me. My time at Gloucestershire House has helped me develop my knowledge and skills. The whole experience is something I’ll never forget.
I want to thank my team for all their support and the residents for letting me get to know and work with them. It’s been fantastic.