CAREGiver (of the Year!) 2018 · Home Instead Recruitment
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Name: Michael Bradbury

Job Title: CAREGiver

Family man Mike Bradbury began his career as a joiner. Three years ago, the dad of four decided to reinvent himself as a CAREGiver after realising that his role left him unfulfilled.

“Many people choose to stick with the career path they’re on, even when they’re not happy,” he said. “But I knew that helping other people would help me just as much. I took the leap and joined Home Instead Senior Care. Now I give a lot of myself but in return my clients inspire me and I look forward to every day.”

Fast forward three years and Mike was awarded Home Instead’s CAREGiver of the Year accolade – out of 9,000 other CAREGivers from across the UK. The 45-year-old was recognised for going above and beyond to provide friendship, as well as personalised support, to elderly clients in his community.

His nine-year-son Thomas also looks to follow in his father’s footsteps as he was so proud of his dad’s achievement that he gave a presentation to his class, describing him as the best CAREGiver in Europe!

“To have been honoured with this award is the cherry on the cake,” Mike said. “To be honoured again by my son Thomas, well that’s an extra cherry on top of that! While other nine-year-olds might aspire to be firemen, astronauts, or pop stars, he’s looked at me and decided he wants to be a CAREGiver. I can’t begin to describe how good it feels to know he is proud of me and that he aspires to help others as well.”

When he isn’t spending time with family, Mike is often to be found strolling in his local area with 97-year-old client Morris. Morris shares Mike’s interest in craft and woodwork, so even Mike’s joinery skills are still put to use, as a source of good conversation.

Home Instead CAREGivers spend a minimum of an hour with each client and this has enabled Mike to develop long and trusting relationships with the people he supports. One lady with dementia went from struggling to click with anyone to greeting Mike with a hug every time she sees him. She even began to recognise her husband from old photographs and told Mike that she wished he’d got to meet him.

Paul Vickers, owner of the Home Instead High Peak office where Mike is a CAREGiver said: “Mike is known for meticulously researching the needs and preferences of his clients, so that he can do things just the way they like them. When one elderly gentleman expressed that he preferred a wet shave to an electric razor, Mike bought the equipment and practiced on himself until he was good enough to give his client the shave he wanted. He’s learned other new skills as well, including cooking a fantastic fish and parsley sauce and painting with watercolours, all so that he can help his clients continue to share the things they enjoy.”

Paul added: “Mike is a genuine and special kind of CAREGiver. When he came to Home Instead, his only experience was of caring for his own parents but he wanted to make a difference to the lives of others in his local community. He took to the role like a duck to water and has proved to be an outstanding friend and a CAREGiver to all of his clients.”