Celebrating International Women’s Day 2021 and a tribute to Dr Helen Walker

5th March 2021

Today is #InternationalWomensDay and we would like to start by paying homage to Dr Helen Walker, one of the founding members of St Barnabas Hospice who sadly died last month age 92.

Dr Helen Walker being presented with an award

Helen played a pivotal role in the committee which set up our beloved Hospice, working with other doctors and consultants to create a safe haven for those reaching the end of their life back in 1979. She worked with Sheila Briggs and Doreen Wood to fundraise for our first Inpatient Unit, which opened on Lindum Terrace in 1982, and she received a special commemoration award in 2017 as part of our 35th birthday celebrations.

Today at 11.15am, Helen’s funeral will take place at Lincoln Cathedral and representatives from St Barnabas will attend to honour such a wonderful lady who gave hope to the people of Lincolnshire during difficult times.

Helen leaves behind a remarkable legacy which we will be forever indebted to.

St Barnabas Hospice in 2021
“Here’s to strong women… may we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.” 👩🏼‍🦳👱🏻‍♀️👩🏾👩🏻‍🦰

On #InternationalWomensDay we are proud to announce that 85% of our workforce is female and an incredible 74% of staff in management roles are female. Here is just a small selection of the inspirational ladies who work across the Hospice in clinical and non-clinical roles…

We have so many amazing women working and volunteering for the Hospice, but today we have decided to highlight five individuals who represent the wider clinical and non-clinical teams across the county. Read on to find out more about Jen, Chloe, Georgina, Marie and Silvia.

Jen White – Management Accountant

I enjoy working for such a worthwhile and caring organisation alongside a great team of people.  It is satisfying to know that my role combines my enjoyment of working with numbers with making a small contribution to the high quality of care that the people in Lincolnshire receive from St Barnabas.

I work part time as a management accountant in the finance department.  This involves helping to ensure that transactions are correctly accounted for and producing the monthly management accounts for departmental heads, showing their income and expenditure against budgets. I am also involved in monitoring the cash position of the Trust and cash flow forecasting.

Chloe Pearson – Welfare & Benefits Team Leader

I enjoy working for St Barnabas because I get to work with an incredible team of people and mine and their main goal is to ensure we help as many patients/families as we possibly can across Lincolnshire. It’s a really rewarding job, to not only enjoy your work, but to be able to help others who are going through a difficult time.

I have worked at St Barnabas 9 years this year, and my role is welfare & benefits team leader. I lead a team of 8 welfare & benefit advisers. Our role is to support patients with financial help when they have been diagnosed with a life limiting illness. My role is to ensure we help as many patients and their families access welfare benefits and financial support that they are entitled to and help with applying for benefits/grants and practical support such as blue badges. We also help support with bereavement benefits; we take the pressure off when they need to concentrate on their health.

Georgina Keenleyside – Consultant Palliative Medicine and Medical Director

My job is split between a clinical consultant role and the Medical Director role. Clinically I work as a consultant supporting patient care in the St Barnabas Inpatient Unit, Lincoln County Hospital and via the telephone advice line for health care professionals across Lincolnshire.

As Medical Director I have a leadership role as an executive of the Hospice which considers all aspects of how we best deliver outstanding hospice care in Lincolnshire. As part of my role, I have the opportunity to work with the county wide strategic groups which aim to improve palliative and end of life care for everyone in Lincolnshire.

All the teams at St Barnabas Hospice have a compassionate and professional approach to care that I feel every day which motivates me to be the best I can be. Hospice care is about more than what takes place within our hospice buildings, it’s the outstanding care we can deliver to every person that each member of staff and our wonderful volunteers support.  St Barnabas cares for people across Lincolnshire and works collaboratively with other organisations to get the right care at the right time for every individual. It is the care I would want for my family so for me that is the best test of what we deliver, and I am forever proud to be a part of this.

Having a medical role with patients in addition to my executive role has allowed me to really understand the care we deliver and translate that to drive continuous review and improvements. St Barnabas never stands still and whilst recognising great work is also looking ahead to new ideas and improved ways of working. This is exciting for me and a new idea or challenge each day keeps me thinking.

I have worked at St Barnabas for 10 years and working through the pandemic has been the most challenging time I and many others have experienced. During this year, I have seen resilience and, at times when batteries are running low, such care and attention to do what is right for our patients, carers, supporters and each other. That is what has kept me wanting to come to work each day.

Marie Pattison – Supporter Care Officer

I enjoy talking to our wonderful supporters and seeing the heartfelt words of appreciation they send in their letters along with their kind donations.  It all goes to show how much we all make a difference to people’s lives in their time of need.

My role is to ensure all the donations are recorded and acknowledged in a timely and precise manner along with ensuring we look after our supporters the best we can.

Silvia Potts – Health & Rehabilitation Support Worker

My name is Silvia Potts and I work in Day Therapy Grantham. My role entails the delivery of Tai chi, Relaxation, Exercise class and fatigue as well as horticultural class and memory box making. I can also give hand relaxation and training to be spiritual champion and have attended mindfulness courses. I am also involved in the organising of the day to day running of day therapy and phone support for our patients.

What I like especially in my job is the interaction with our patients. Our service aims to smoothen the road ahead and to enable our patients to get the best quality possible and benefits available to their individual circumstances.

I love the positive feedback we often receive and the confirmation from our patients that what we do is enhancing their life and they actually love coming to see us or be visited by us as we currently do. The job satisfaction is immeasurable, and I feel humbled now and then how lucky I am to be able to help our patients with what looks very little but achieves so much time and time again.

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