22 Years With Lifeways - Karen's Story
Karen Roberts, Group Head of Health and Clinical Governance, joined Lifeways 22 years ago when the company was only three years old! She started out as a Care Co-ordinator and has since worked her way up to Group Head of Health and Clinical Governance.
What has been the biggest change to Lifeways since you joined?
“In my 22 years of working here, I would say the addition of the internal support functions as we've grown was one of the biggest changes. When I first started, support came from external companies that you rang for advice and we didn't have some of the functions such as Quality and Health and Safety. These roles all sat with the Service Managers and Area Managers. This change has meant colleagues can contact people who know the business, know our systems and processes, and who people are able to build a rapport with. I also think as a result of this, people are more likely to reach out for support, advice and guidance as they have identified names they can contact rather than just a number to ring where they don’t speak to the same person twice”.
What should we be celebrating about Lifeways 25th birthday
“The best thing about working at Lifeways is the people. I couldn’t do my job without the amazing people we support, our operational colleagues, and support functions. I love seeing people living happy and fulfilled lives. I feel very privileged to be able to visit people in their homes and see the work the staff teams do to make a difference through the support they provide.
You can never underestimate the role you can play in someone’s life and the lasting impact you can have in it. Working for Lifeways gives you the opportunity to experience this and to make a real difference. It’s not always easy and there may be tough days but you will have a local team around you to support you when you need them and seeing the people we support thrive and live happy lives makes it all worth it”.
What is your favourite Lifeways memory?
"There are too many to single anyone out, however some of the memories which have stayed with me are of people who we no longer support or who have very limited support as we worked with them to develop their independence and confidence so over time we were able to reduce the support to minimal or in some cases nothing. It was an amazing feeling and privilege to have been part of that journey and to see them when they came in to say “hello” and how proud they were of all they had and continued to achieve".
What is the highlight of working for Lifeways?
"2020 has been a tough year for everyone and certainly not the way we had planned to celebrate Lifeways 25th birthday but one thing that will stand out for me is how everyone has pulled together. There has never been any question we wouldn’t get through this it was always how, and when times have got hard the camaraderie within all the teams have picked people up and got them through. Seeing how colleagues have adapted their roles, those who have come up with creative ideas to try and ensure the people we support have as much normality as possible as well the many other stories of how colleagues have kept spirits up has been a real highlight".