A day in the life of our Hayling Island care home

Published: Tuesday 6th October 2020

Working as part of the care team at one of the care homes on Hayling Island makes for a busy but very rewarding job. We asked team leader Ruth Santos to give us an insight into her day at Gorseway Nursing Home.

Gorseway Care Home Hayling Island team leader

No such thing as an average day

The first thing to tell you is that there’s no such thing as an average day at our Gorseway Nursing and Care Homes on Hayling Island in Hampshire. Yes, we have a routine which is so important, particularly for our residents living with dementia. But when it comes to working in care, no two days are exactly alike. That’s one of the reasons I like my job so much.

I live on Hayling Island, so it’s only about a 20 minutes’ walk to the lovely Gorseway site, arriving for an 8am start. As the team leader, I’m responsible for a team of care assistants, higher healthcare assistants and senior care assistants.

I started working at Gorseway Nursing Home three and a half years ago. I came in as a care assistant, fresh into the care industry, and have worked my way up. I’ve been a team leader for the past 18 months.

My day begins in the dining room with my team, making sure everything runs smoothly for our residents while they have breakfast. I then make sure that everyone has the personal care, emotional support and repositioning they need throughout the day and that the team is working well together.

Person-centred dementia care at our Hayling Island care home

My team works on the ‘Memory Lane’ dementia floor of the nursing home where we care for residents living with a variety of kinds of dementia. Above all, our focus is on person-centred care, treating every single resident as their own person, an individual.

Dining Room at our Hayling Island care home

Getting to know our residents

Because we take the time to get to know our residents so well, we understand their likes and dislikes. We know who they prefer to sit next to during lunch and who feels comfortable with whom.

Some of our residents can’t express themselves easily. That’s when knowing them well is critical. Often you know exactly what they need before they even have to try asking.

Managing the team

When a new member of the team joins us, I spend 2–3 days giving them an induction into how we work on the dementia floor. I’ll explain how things work and give them a really good introduction to all our residents. Spending time with my team members like this means they feel comfortable coming to me to talk through questions, problems or suggestions. I also complete supervisions and monitor my team’s competencies.

My role at our Hayling Island care home involves quality assurance. I make sure records are accurate and up-to-date. This involves checking on residents’ fluids and positions and updating families. I’m also the first port of call in the team for anyone who has queries or a complaint.

As you would expect, safety is really key for us. As I go about my day I look around as though I’m seeing through a resident’s eyes. I’m checking to make sure there aren’t any hazards or materials that shouldn’t be there.

I really can’t see myself doing anything else

My 12-hour shift finishes at 8pm. It’s a long day and some days are harder than others. But I love my job and dementia care is my particular passion. I feel fortunate to be working in one of Hayling Island’s dementia care homes.

COVID has without a doubt been a challenge for all of us working in care. And it’s been very hard on our residents who haven’t been able to see their loved ones in person. But my job is endlessly rewarding and I really can’t see myself doing anything else.

To find our more, call us now on 02392 466 411.