Huddersfield Support Worker Scoops Unsung Hero Award

A support worker from Huddersfield won an Unsung Hero award for the sacrifices he made during Covid to protect vulnerable individuals with learning disabilities.

This year, Cygnet Health Care launched the first ever Achievement Awards, open to all staff across Healthcare, Social Care and Support Services, to celebrate its caring, dedicated and hard-working colleagues. Cygnet Health Care supports individuals with mental health needs, learning disabilities and autism and employs nearly 11,000 staff across the UK.

Held at the Botanical Gardens in Birmingham, the inaugural awards recognised the individuals and teams who made outstanding contributions towards ensuring service users receive the highest standard of care.

Gavin Nugent is a support worker at Oxley Woodhouse, a specialist residential service in Huddersfield, supporting individuals with learning disabilities, complex needs and behaviours that may challenge. He won the Unsung Hero award which recognised an individual who is always there and will pitch in and do whatever is needed to help and support their colleagues and service users.

He was presented with his award by BBC presenter JJ Chalmers who was guest of honour at the event.

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Pam Wenger, Board Secretary at Cygnet Health Care, said: “During the pandemic Gavin decided to move out of his home and camp at a local campsite so he could protect his family but continue working at Oxley. This sums him up – Gavin puts other people’s needs ahead of his own.

He is always thinking of new ways to bring everyone together and his ideas are big hits with the residents. He has organised fishing and camping trips, model railway building, filmmaking and even built a Viking fort in the garden. He does so much in his own time and is 100% an unsung hero.”

Upon receiving the award, Gavin said: “It is really humbling to win this award, I feel exceptionally lucky to be recognised for the work I have done and the sacrifices I made during Covid. Making other people happy is a big motivation for me and that is why I find this job so satisfying, making a difference to the lives of our service users. It makes me feel good to see them happy. The entire event has been amazing, it has felt like the Oscars of support working.”

Colleagues were able to nominate one another and there was almost 1,000 nominations across 12 categories, all judged by different, independent panels recognising the range of skills across the Cygnet Health Care workforce – including support workers, clinicians, chefs, IT, nursing and all the other vital roles.

Courtesy of Health & Wellbeing | Huddersfield Times