The sense of togetherness we have seen across the hospice throughout the COVID-19 crisis shows so clearly how we live our values as we continue to support patients, families and our colleagues across the organisation. Rowcroft has been adapting to the challenges of the pandemic by redeploying employees to different parts of the hospice. Here Georgia Brooks, Rowcroft’s Community Fundraiser from our Fundraising Team, explains how she has been redeployed to work as a Health Care Assistant in Rowcroft’s Inpatient Unit (IPU). For the last few months, Georgia has been providing personal care to patients, supporting families, and assisting nurses and other clinicians in carrying out their roles.
What past experiences have helped you to be effective in this new role?
“Before undertaking my degree and gaining employment at Rowcroft, I worked as a Health Care Assistant for seven years at Torbay Hospital and in general practice. During this time, I gained my diploma in health and social care, and I was involved with the training of new staff and undertook many courses to enhance my skill set and practice. I have really missed nursing, so it has been lovely to be able to make something positive of this difficult time we find ourselves in and to step back into a pair of scrubs.”
Why is it so important to come together and share skills across the hospice during this time?
“There are so many reasons why it is important to pull together at the moment. This can be quite an isolating time for some — therefore a strong sense of community is really important. I think it is a great time to exercise Rowcroft’s core values, particularly ‘generosity of spirit’. Everyone throughout the hospice is making sacrifices and facing changes to the norm to ensure the safety and longevity of the hospice, whether that be: working from home, which can be a really lonely place for some people; taking furlough; working longer hours and more shifts; or stepping into a new role. It has been so inspiring to see how much everyone at Rowcroft has come together and given so much of themselves.”
How does it make you feel to be helping in the IPU?
“During these times you can feel powerless, so it’s lovely to know that I can use my skill set to help make the load a little lighter for the amazing staff in IPU. Everyone has made me feel so welcome. Watching how they work and seeing the care and compassion they provide to patients, it’s absolutely incredible. They really are heroes. I also feel so thankful that I can go out to work everyday, even though it’s different from my usual role. For me, I would find working from home a real challenge. I’ve always been proud to work for Rowcroft but never more so than during this time.”