Awards success reflects apprenticeship commitment at Colten Care
A south coast care home provider has won a prestigious education sector award recognising its commitment to employee apprenticeships.
Family-owned Colten Care, six of whose 21 homes are officially rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission, was hailed as a top employer at the inaugural Apprenticeship Awards held by Havant and South Downs College.
The company saw off competition from businesses in other industry sectors to win the Outstanding Investment in Employee Development award.
At the same time, there was a personal success for Daniela Martins, a Healthcare Assistant at Colten Care’s dedicated dementia care home Fernhill in Dorset, one of the six Outstanding homes. Daniela won the much coveted Star Learner award, also against nominees from different industries.
In their citation for Colten Care, the college judging panel praised the company’s ‘huge investment in staff development’, writing: “With over 60 members of staff on Health and Social Care apprenticeship programmes in 2019, they have made a firm commitment to ensuring their staff deliver the highest quality of care for their residents. The company give every apprentice the opportunity to attend training, helping staff continue their journey of development whilst offering outstanding care to their residents.”
Andrew Arkinstall, Director of Human Resources at Colten Care, said: “We now have more than 150 staff undertaking apprentice qualifications, 60 of whom are supported by Havant and South Downs College. Our apprentices are spread across a wide range of skills, including catering, care, nursing, customer services, business administration, management and IT. All of our students have a great opportunity to progress their careers at Colten whatever their level of study, whether starting out at a Level 2 or 3 Diploma or on our more advanced Degree level Apprentice programmes.”
Andrew continued: “We are immensely proud of Daniela’s individual achievement on two grounds. She was up against hundreds of others who are supported by the college, and English is not her first language. For her childhood and most of her adult years she lived in Portugal but she has progressed her English to a very high standard, supported by additional online learning.”
Gina Smith, Home Manager at Fernhill, where Daniela has worked since 2018, said: “Daniela demonstrates what true compassion and commitment means in her role of supporting those who are living with dementia at Fernhill. She ensures her own knowledge and training is up to date and she is always striving to learn more to enhance her ability to carry out her duties to the benefit of the residents, colleagues and the home. As Home Manager I observe her with pride as she is an inspiration to all she comes into contact with during her working day.”
Other companies winning awards at the Havant and South Downs College ceremony included Southern Cooperative, cruise giant Carnival UK, brewery and pub chain Fullers, and optical retailer Specsavers.
Pictured above: Colten Care team members at the inaugural Apprenticeship Awards held at Havant and South Downs College in Hampshire.