Sarah joined the staff of the Guernsey Cheshire Home in October 2017, having previously been a sister at St. John’s Residential Home for two and a half years. Prior to that, Sarah was a staff nurse on Victoria Wing at the PEH, after completing her “Return to Nursing” course back in 2008. Sarah had left nursing for a time and gone into finance, business and PA work, and she feels this variety of experience helps her contribute more to the team at the Home, because she can fulfil a fundraising and administration function as well as her core nursing role.
Compared with her previous nursing positions, Sarah was immediately struck by the Home’s incredibly positive and life-enhancing ethos. She feels proud to be a part of a team working tirelessly to help people with potentially life-limiting illnesses to be as independent and proactive as possible. Sarah explains how people with quite severe disabilities are able to carry on as near a normal life as possible at the Home – going out socially, taking part in activities on site and going out on trips, for example. Whereas some people may initially and understandably feel that. if they are diagnosed with a life-limiting disability, their life is effectively over. Sarah is keen to stress that is emphatically not the case at the Guernsey Cheshire Home. “We are very much all about encouraging people to live to the very best of their abilities,” explains Sarah, “which I find makes it a very inspiring environment. I love being a part of it.”
Before joining the team, like many people, Sarah had only really heard about the Guernsey Cheshire Home through fundraising events such as the ‘Million Pounds’ lottery, and she admits that prior to coming for her first interview she did not even know where the building was located. Once she joined the staff, however, Sarah found it to be a very welcoming place, with ‘inspiring residents and committed colleagues, and quickly settled in.
Sarah is absolutely loving working at the Cheshire Home and continues to be impressed and inspired on a daily basis by the level of dedication that staff have for their residents. She is keen to raise awareness of the wonderful work the Home is engaged in, and says her hope is that the Home can continue to grow in people’s hearts, and that more people come to take it under their wing and realise what a special place the Cheshire Home is.
When asked to sum up the Guernsey Cheshire Home in one sentence, Sarah reflects for a while, then explains with obvious passion: “A while back somebody was asking whether the Home was a hospice, where people came to die – and in actuality it’s very much the opposite, in the fact that people come here to live – to live to the fullest of their abilities, to be as optimistic and independent as they possibly can – and the Home makes that possible.”