Lulworth House’s Nourishment and Social Wellness Coordinator, Katja Osmotherly, has tried multiple roles and says the team are like family:

“I first started working at Lulworth House in 2005. I have done a bit of everything; I started as a Carer, then worked up to a Senior Carer position. I moved into the Activities team after having my first child, then stepped up to work as the Chef for a while. I also reverted back to a Caring or Senior role in between each job change. I have also worked some stand-in shifts throughout my time here, to cover those in the Laundry and Kitchen as needed. The best part about the team at Lulworth is that we are like a family; we are all loved and appreciated. Everyone is their own individual person and people are helped to grow and develop themselves in ways which support them as an individual.

Having had my second child, we found that the shift pattern of a Caring or Senior role was not working for us as a family and I developed into the new role of Nourishment and Social Wellness Coordinator which I have been for a few years now and enjoy it so much! I love running our baking club, I work out their MUST scores and refer our residents to the dietician team or SALT team as needed and deal with them for each review. I wrote the menus using the likes and dislikes of our residents and I keep their nutrition care plans up-to-date by reviewing them each month and adding any changes. I also enjoy support the Care team during mealtimes by serving the residents their meals in the dining room, which we strive to keep as enjoyable and person centred as possible. Supporting their choices and likes and dislikes where possible.

The training I have received over the years is extensive. I have completed all of the mandatory trainings within each role, and I have also worked through my NVQ Level 2 and 3 in Care. I have, in the past, been the in-house Moving and Handling trainer. I am currently the in-house Infection Control Trainer and hope to complete the next Food Hygiene Train the Trainer course soon, which was cancelled at the beginning of the Covid outbreak. I also have been on many trainings with Leni Wood (Nutrition and Wellness Manager) which are more about the food side of my role, including becoming Hydration Champion and enjoying taking part in the Nellsar Chef Masterclasses on Zoom which were put together during this year.

The part I enjoy most about my Nourishment and Social Wellness role is that the residents at Lulworth see me differently to the Carers and a lot of them recognise that my job is based not only around food but also time. We are able to enjoy chatting during mealtimes and I can ask them how they slept or if they enjoyed the options available. It is a much more holistic approach to serving their meals and they appreciate that I am always available for them to give them something they desire and get it ordered in if it something we don’t usually store.

Lulworth has changed a lot in the years I have been working there; there has been multiple changes in management who all have put their own mark on the Home. Our Home Manager Catherine Singh is a brilliant manager and she has brought such a lovely environment into Lulworth during her years with us. She is very supportive of both the residents and the staff and willing to work to people’s strengths. Catherine has made the Home beautiful; the back garden outside the dining room has been made resident-friendly and flat, and the decking was changed to a nice area with astro turf and raised flower beds. It has given the residents such a lovely place to enjoy outdoor activities and parties in the warmer months.

With my job role, a big improvement is that the external professionals (like the Dietician Team and the SALT Team) are supportive and so happy with the care we give and how we follow instruction. The Dietician Team in particular always mention how good it is to have one point of contact within the Home rather than speaking to a different person each time they ring. They often mention that they are confident that the care we give is to a high standard.

I am very proud to have completed all my training over the years; I have always felt really supported by the team around me. I am improving my cake decorating skills, baking and also my piping techniques through running a regular baking club with the residents, which is great fun. In the future, I look forward to gaining more knowledge that will help me improve the foods and menu’s offered to the residents.”