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Carer managed to overcome her phobia of water so she could take patient out for a swimming session

Author: Educare Staffing | Posted: 31st October 2016 | Category: General News


A care worker in Bury managed to fight past her fear of swimming so she could take the lady she cares for out for a swimming session.

Maria Hughes, a 22-year-old carer from Bury, found that the woman she cared for often made a physical sign for swimming.

“When I asked if that was what she wanted to go and do she would reply ‘yes” said Maria. Unable to swim, Maria undertook a ten-week swimming course in her own time and even paid for the lessons herself.

She commented: “It took me a while to get over the fear of drowning – despite having lessons in the shallow end, but once I’d broken through that I got the hang of it more quickly than I had expected.” Eventually, Maria became confident enough to swim and support her partner alone and the pair benefitted from this greatly. Maria said: “We would swim a length and she would then say ‘more’ repeatedly each time until we had to go. It was mostly her facial expressions that indicated how much she enjoyed the one to one time getting out and doing an activity that she loved.”

Maria Hughes was recently crowned ‘Young Carer of the Year’ at Persona’s first annual awards, in recognition of her dedication to her care role.

She was initially drawn in by care work after volunteering in schemes that specialised in working with children and adults with learning difficulties. She commented on the matter, “I found these experiences to be extremely enjoyable and rewarding and could not imagine a more satisfying career.”

“At the heart of the job I do is the people that I support. Trying my hardest to accommodate their best interests is sometimes challenging and can take me out of my comfort zone which is really positive and enriching.”

The strong team of 38 members at Spurr House (a short stay centre in Bury) were rewarded with the Dignity Award, which identified their dedication to keeping up the personal dignity and independence of their visitors.

“They are all stars in my opinion and I don’t know what we would do without them. The staff at Spurr House have always treated my mother with respect and patience”, said a relative of a patient.

“The sheer volume of nominations we received was genuinely overwhelming. Each one was heartfelt and each one told a story of the amazing difference care and support workers can make to someone’s life. Careers in care and support can be challenging at times but they are also incredibly rewarding. The first PersonAwards is our way of recognising excellence and celebrating it.” said Kat Sowden, the managing director at Persona, Bury.

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