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Council staff go the extra mile to get to home care clients (06/01/10)
Council care at home staff throughout the Highlands are going the extra mile to maintain services to clients in rural areas.
An example of the efforts being made to get to older and vulnerable people has been witnessed in the Dingwall area and the Black Isle, where staff have gone beyond the call of duty in order to visit their clients.
Following the heavy snow fall at Hogmanay, carers experienced problems getting to their clients in the Dingwall, Conon Bridge, Maryburgh, Strathpeffer, Fortrose and Cromarty areas.
Senior Home Care Organisers Debbie Morrison and Liz Strachan-Spears and Meg Shaw, Acting Senior Home Care Officer based at Dingwall, are responsible for managing 52 home carers who serve 215 clients.
Debbie said: “The team made 540 client visits from 31 December to the 3 January. There were 75 visits that we couldn’t make but received support of clients’ families and friends ensuring that clients were warm and fed or left additional supplies at morning visits to ensure that our home carer safety wasn’t compromised trying to return to clients. Because of the holidays we had a reduced number of carers working over these days and without their commitment to the clients we wouldn’t have been able to provide the level of service that we did. Some carers came in from days off to assist.”
Debbie, Liz, Meg and the Council’s Care at Home Manager, Brian Robertson assisted by making some of the visits. Meanwhile Debbie’s husband Mark Morrison, who is a driver with The Highland Council refuse collection services and a retained fire fighter with Highland and Islands Fire and Rescue Service, drove some of the carers to their clients in a 4x4 vehicle.
Councillor Margaret Davidson, Chairman of the Council’s Housing and Social Work Committee, said: “I cannot thank the home care team enough for the sheer physical effort that they made to walk to many of their clients. Without their dedication we simply would not have got to many of our clients.”
“The extra work and effort by all our home carers either by working when they were due to be on holiday or walking throw the snow to get to clients is admirable. They have done an incredible job that is truly remarkable right through Christmas and the New Year putting others before themselves. This spirit of dedication is not just is Dingwall and the Black Isle. There are examples all over the Highlands. I would like to thank everyone for all their hard work and commitment.”