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10 November 2020

Winner of the first WeCare Wales award announced!

Sandra Stafford - WeCare Wales award winnerSandra Stafford, a foster carer from Conwy County Borough Council, has been named the winner of the first WeCare Wales award at this year’s Accolades.

The WeCare Wales award went to Sandra after she was nominated for the award by social workers Danielle Dally and Sarah Vater.

In their nomination, Danielle and Sarah described Sandra and her husband Mark as “exceptional foster carers” who demonstrate commitment and passion, and who’ve provided a high quality of care to all the children they’ve fostered since 2001.

The Accolades awards, which are organised by Social Care Wales, recognise, celebrate and share excellent social care, early years and childcare practice in Wales.

A total of six Accolades were presented earlier today in a celebratory programme hosted by radio and television presenter Garry Owen and Social Care Wales’s Chief Executive Sue Evans, which was broadcast live over YouTube.

New for 2020, the WeCare Wales award celebrates individual care workers in Wales who have made a positive impact on people’s lives.

Sandra was one of five finalists selected for the award by a panel of judges and was chosen as the winner by a public poll in which more than 2,000 people voted.

The Accolades judging panel included members of Social Care Wales’s Board, representatives from partner organisations across social care, early years and childcare, previous winners and people with experience of using care and support.

Julie Morgan MS, Deputy Minister for Health and Social Care, said: “I’m delighted we have this opportunity with the Accolades to pay tribute to the social care and early years workforce, and to celebrate the contribution of those providing excellence in care in Wales.

“It is so important that we celebrate excellence in care, now more than ever. During what has been an extraordinary and difficult year for us all, we should be proud and encouraged by the amazing examples of care work by our finalists.

“The work carried out is truly innovative and inspirational – there is such a lot to be proud of. Dedication, skill and hard work has brought the finalists to the 2020 Accolades, and I am honoured to recognise and celebrate their success.”

Mick Giannasi CBE, Chair of Social Care Wales, said: “These awards have always been a way to say thank you and to celebrate the great work that’s happening in social care, early years and childcare day in, day out, in communities all across Wales.

“This year has been a year like no other and those working in the social care, early years and childcare sectors have surpassed themselves in the way they have supported individuals and communities, helping keep people safe and enabling them to continue, as best they can, to live the lives that matter to them.

“My congratulations to all the winners and finalists, you should be incredibly proud of your achievements and the excellent work that you do. And thank you to everyone working in social care, early years and childcare for everything you do on behalf of the people of Wales.”

Sue Evans, Social Care Wales’s Chief Executive, said: “We have been delighted by not only the record number, but the standard and variety of entries we received for the 2020 Accolades.

“This year has been one of the toughest yet for our judges, with very little to separate some of the finalists in their categories. The experience has shown just how many great examples of excellent care and support we have here in Wales, and the valuable and positive difference care workers are making to so many people’s lives.

“We will continue to celebrate and share these fantastic examples of care with the social care, early years and childcare sectors going forward, as part of our work to support and improve practice across Wales.”

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