Celebrating Success13 Nov 2019
At Cornerstone, our colleagues are the foundation that our work is built upon, and it’s important that we not only recognise their hard work, but also celebrate their success. This is exactly what we did with a special celebratory event at the Marcliffe Hotel in Aberdeen on Thursday 31 October.
The Cornerstone Awards are a celebration of our wonderful colleagues and their fantastic achievements over the past year. With more than 100 people in attendance, including colleagues from across the country and the people we support, we hosted a ‘spooktacular’ Halloween themed afternoon. Our guests enjoyed a delicious buffet and Halloween treats, and had great fun interacting with our frighteningly fun photo booth complete with ghostly props.
Looking Back Over a Busy 2019
Our Chair, Andrew Lockhart, kicked things off with a warm welcome and a summary of what has been an extremely busy but positive year for Cornerstone.
He said, “It’s been another busy year for us all, which has been summarised in the Annual Review, and our year two evaluation of Local Cornerstone in particular has been very positive. We’ve seen more personalised services and improved staff retention, which has resulted in an engaged and motivated workforce.
“We continue to lobby the Government to ensure that funding is available to allow us to continue paying the minimum living wage rate and we remain committed to doing the best we can for our people. At Cornerstone, social care is genuinely valued as a profession and we understand the importance of supporting others to lead full and valued lives in their communities.
“There remains a huge interest in what we do and it’s essential that we continue to share our stories to inspire others to change. Today is an excellent opportunity to reflect our on our work, and why we do it, especially as we look towards Cornerstone’s 40th anniversary next year. Over the years, our purpose has remained the same and I’m proud that we allow those we support to live a valued life – the life they choose.
“We are extremely grateful for the support of The Cornerstone Foundation, and the generosity of the public and our staff who raise funds. This year, the Foundation distributed £850,000 which made a real difference for 900 of the people we support, and most importantly, has allowed us to transform their lives.”
There was a special mention for Edel Harris, CEO, as it was her last celebratory event before she begins her new role as CEO of Mencap. Joining Cornerstone in 2008, she has achieved a huge amount in her 12 years with us, and we wish Edel every success in the exciting opportunities that lie ahead for her.
We also recognised Jim Douglas’ achievements and contributions to Cornerstone as he stood down after 15 years on the board. Jim was awarded a special, framed golf shirt which was designed and made by the people we support at Woodview in Stonehaven.
Sharing Lives to Change Lives
After some special mentions, guests watched our Shared Lives and Short Breaks film – a short video about our initiative that provides accommodation, care and support for adults.
Our highly motivated and specially trained carers share their households and lives with people who need some additional help to live their lives to the full. Our carers understand the huge difference they can make in preventing loneliness and providing a safe place that allows people to develop their full potential.
A hugely rewarding and worthwhile project, Shared Lives offers a real family, care and support, and a home filled with love to those who need it most. Our carers and people we support don’t see it as a placement, it is home, and we’re proud to enable such a wonderful initiative.
Long Service Awards
We kicked off the celebration by recognising the commitment and service of those who have been a part of Cornerstone for 10, 20, and 25 years, with our Long Service Awards. For the people we support, a team that they know well is so important, and although not everyone could be there on the day, we were delighted to celebrate their hard work and dedication to Cornerstone.
Bernadette Palmer – 25 Year Award
Based in Moray, Bernie is one of our most positive people. Owning more jewellery and cashmere than one person could ever need, she loves disappearing on her ‘holi-pops’ – the short but frequent trips that give her some much needed R&R.
Jill McLennan - 25 Year Award
It is testament to the team in Moray that so many people have worked there for such a long time. Jill is always very bright and positive and is completely committed to providing a quality service to the people we support.
Coleen Higgin – 20 Year Award
We’re very lucky to have Coleen who has worked in the respite service in Moray for 16 years. She was recently awarded a straight 6 from the Care Inspectorate, which is testament to her hard work.
Freda Crone – 20 Year Award
Freda’s grandson Gregor is the light of her life, which goes to show how much of a caring person she is. Freda’s also very calm in challenging situations, and has a special way of lifting people when they’re feeling down. She’s made a lasting impact on the people she has supported.
Darren Macpherson – 20 Year Award
Based in North Lanarkshire, Darren is dedicated to his team and the people he supports, who are lucky to always receive his brightest smile!
Kathleen Fitchy – 10 Year Award
Initially based at the Benzie service and now settled with team at Springhill in Dundee, Kathleen is embracing the Local Cornerstone model. She is a yoga enthusiast, and her flexible approach is appreciated by her team.
Susan Hoben – 10 Year Award
Susan started as a Relief Worker in Clydebank and is now based at Moss Cottage. She is a key member of the team and her dedication to the people we support is an excellent reflection of our Cornerstone values.
Last but not least were our Cornerstone Awards, our internal awards programme that recognises the great work of colleagues who go over and above. You can read more about the Awards here!
We hope everyone had a wonderful afternoon and we look forward to the next annual celebration that recognises our inspirational, dedicated, and life-changing colleagues.