THE AMANDLA WARRIOR

 

“I founded Soft Touch following many happy years of experience working in the healthcare industry. During this time, my work spanned all aspects of helping people and supporting their needs both physical and mental. From elderly residents and dementia sufferers to children and adults with special needs, learning difficulties and disabilities, I am committed to providing the very best support at all times.

This working ethos has continued at Soft Touch Care and remains the underlying principle of how we work. The person we are caring for and their well-being is always the priority. When commissioning our services, you can rest assured that you’re dealing with someone who is passionate about their role and has a genuine desire to help people”.

Caregiving comes naturally to caregivers. The actions can be taught, but not the compassion. Caregiving is a gift and not everyone has this gift. I have been a caregiver for most of my life. I remember as young as six years old, I was massaging my uncle’s swollen feet, putting bandages on my siblings’ hands and legs when they hurt themselves. 

 I have an amazing job; my work is with people.  I started as a volunteer a long time ago, with advice from an old friend.  I was sitting at the bus stop, sobbing my eyes out, and she reached out to me, I was grieving over the loss of my young cousin who passed away at fourteen to bone cancer. She comforted me and advised that I do volunteer work, to get over my pain and suffering.  She said that in order to heal, I should witness how there are people out there who have greater needs, others who are abandoned, abused and neglected and people who were lonely and had no one to care for their wellbeing.  The young, the old we all have some affliction that needs to be healed.  The sorrow I felt at that moment vanished when I heard her words.  So, I became a volunteer as an assistant teacher for a school for the disadvantaged children in Johannesburg “Little Eden”

From that moment there was no turning back. I started to enjoy giving back to others, it lifted my spirit every time I witnessed someone smile after a difficult situation.  It was a pleasure to teach others how to hold a pen and write for the first time.  I continued to work as a volunteer for many years, I came abroad twenty years ago and continued my service, as a volunteer whilst doing paid work.  It is a joy to help others, see their smile, enjoy their talks, travel down memory lane with them.

In my free time, I meditate, read books on spirituality and just enjoy my freedom of being. it needs a strong character and personality to do the job I do, as we come in contact with all kinds of people in our lives. The things you need to be in this job are:

If you are looking at how to become a care worker, patience is of course key when dealing with patients and service users with diminished capabilities. Sometimes they may be slower at moving about or explaining what they need. They may also be difficult or frustrated, prone to taking that out on their carer. Remaining calm and patient no matter how stressful the task at hand may be is truly a skill and is incredibly important, as anger or irritability can affect a care worker’s ability to do their job and can of course upset patients.

A smile is sometimes more powerful than a thousand words. A carer might be the only person an individual comes into contact with during their day, so if they are pleasant, friendly and personable this could make a real difference and demonstrate core care skills. A cheerful demeanor also puts patients at ease and helps them to feel comfortable – and this is especially important if a care worker is dealing with personal care requirements.

When you are looking at how to become a carer, one of the key things you need to consider is your ability to multitask.  Often carers are expected to work alone or as part of small teams, which can lead to them frequently being overstretched with lots to do. Good carers step up to the challenge and can effectively deal with more than one task at once whilst ensuring that the level of care they provide remains high.

The very nature of care means that things can change quickly – especially when patients have severe care needs. Therefore, one of the qualities of a good carer, is their ability to think on their feet and deal with unexpected occurrences and difficult situations can be invaluable – and can even save lives

This is especially crucial when working in a home care capacity – because often those receiving care look forward to or plan their day around care provision. If a carer is late it can be disruptive or disappointing and may even impact the level and amount of care that person receives if their time is restricted.

Good carers are never satisfied with their level of training or ability. They always want to learn more, progress further, be better at what they do, and provide the best care possible.

Naturally, people receiving care often have stories to tell or feel they need someone to talk to – especially elderly patients.  Therefore, having good, and patient, listening skills is one of the many qualities of a carer for the elderly.  Great carers take time to listen – both to the feedback they receive, and any issues patients share with them, but also in a personal capacity.

A little kindness goes such a long way, especially when you are looking at the qualities of a carer for the elderly – and it is often greatly appreciated by patients. When a carer is able to put themselves into the shoes of their patient, they can truly appreciate what a difference they can make.

Good carers will often stay past their clocking-off time if it means a patient is properly attended to. They’ll go out of their way to find the snacks a patient loves, sit for longer than they should as they talk about their family, or signpost them to other services when they indicate that they are struggling or need more support. It’s these little touches that make a really good carer – and could make a huge difference to patients, especially where you are looking at qualities of a carer for the elderly.

Ultimately carers often have great responsibility placed upon their shoulders. The best carers take this in their stride and never underestimate the importance of the work they do. They also fully accept any mistakes they make and understand that nobody is perfect – taking something from errors and mishaps rather than blaming their rota or their patient.

I love my work and would recommend that if you ever feel lonely, sad or abandoned, try to be a volunteer to help others, whether it is with animals, nature or people, it will change your life for the better.

 

 I worked in several health care settings from children and adult day care centres to medium secure units for children and adults.  over the years. Each resident or patient that I cared for, I would come to love. I treated them as I would my own family members, with love, compassion, and dignity. I often felt honoured to be someone caring for my residents. I felt compassion and I felt sympathy and empathy. I was grateful to be part of one’s journey through the end of their life.

In hospitals, nursing homes, residential services for children etc,  we have many people who are not ill but the majority of my residents that I worked with, were sick and often dying. I felt love for everyone I cared for. I also felt as if God had chosen me for this job. I felt my childhood experiences had laid the groundwork for this passion of mine, for caregiving.

Caring for my own children was one of the most rewarding times in my life. I learned so much and I had to “adjust my sails with the wind,” depending on what was happening. There is nothing like caring for your own child and caring for an individual that relies on you for their wellbeing.

You see, for me, the greatest rewards of caregiving are those we cannot see or hold.

Caregivers feel! We feel love, raw and honest. We feel honour because we “get to” take care of others. We feel compassion because it connects us to those we are caring for. We feel belonging because our caregiving is needed and wanted. We comfort those in their time of need. We feel special because our caregiving is a gift, and we give that gift away every day. We feel loss, when residents die, when family dies, or when one’s condition takes a turn for the worse. We feel gratitude for our abilities to care for and to witness that which is life.

Dying is the end of one’s life but still always part of everyday life when you are a caregiver. One’s journey onward, after death, is one of the most sacred times. To be part of that – even as caregivers – is an immensely powerful feeling. Often, we hear of the beautiful stories of the caregivers  to the dying. Those stories are the dance, the lifeblood of why we are caregivers.

We are caregivers because we are love. We are family. We are professionals in the caregiving fields. We are chosen ones. We are chosen because we honour the many roles of caregiving, of life, of illness, of death, and of LOVE.

 

CODE OF CONDUCT FOR HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS

Purpose 

You are responsible for and have a duty of care to ensure that your conduct does not fall below the standards detailed in the code.  Nothing that you do, or omit to do, should harm the safety and wellbeing being of people who use health care services and the public.

1. Be honest with yourself and others about what you can do, recognise your abilities and limitations of your competence and only carry out or delegate those tasks agreed on your job role and for which you are competent.

2. Be able to justify and be accountable for your actions or your ommissions-what you fail to do.

3. Report any actions or ommissions by yourselves or colleagues that you may feel may compromise the safety or care of people who use health and care services. If necessary use whistleblowing policies procedures to report any suspected wrongdoing.

3. Be alert to any changes that could affect a persons needs or progress and report your observations in line with your employers agreed ways of working.

4. Challenge and report dangerous, abusive, discrimantory or exploitive behavior or practice.

5. Always take comments and complaints seriously, respond to them in line with agreed ways of working and inform a senior member of staff.

6. Recognise and respert the role and expertise of your collegues both in the team and from other agencies and disciplines and work in partnership with them.

7. work openly and co operatively with collegues including those from other disciplines and treat them with respect.

8. Honour your work commitment , agreements and arrangements and be reliable , dependable and trustworthy.

9. Actively encourage the delivery of high quality healthcare and support.

10. Communicate effectively and consult with your colleagues as appropriate.

11. Always explain and discuss the care support or procedure you intend to carry out with the person and only continue if they give their consent.

12. Recognise both the extent and limits of your role, knowledge and competence when communicating with people who use health and care services, carers and collegues.

13. Always seek guidence from a senior member of staff regarding any information or issues that you are concerned about.

14. Always discuss issues of disclosure with a senior member of staff.

15. Participate in continuing professional development to achieve the competence required for your role.

16. Improve the quality and safety of the care you provide with the help of your supervisor  and a mentor if available and in line with your agreed ways of working.

17. Contribute to the learning and development of others as appropriate.

18. Report any concerns regarding, equality, diversity and inclusion to a senior member of staff as soon as possible.