A SET of Angels is helping people who need care – and those who deliver it.
And Visiting Angels Manchester East believe their approach can help citizens, on both sides, get the best treatment possible.
Based on Featherstall Road South in Oldham, the group cares for clients on the entire eastern side of Greater Manchester.
Tales of social and care workers not being up to the job are spreading through communities – Visiting Angels believes it can change that.
The American domiciliary care provider started in Pennsylvania and grew to about 850 offices across America before branching into five countries internationally, including the UK.
And its ‘carer-centric’ model brings the best out of the people who are responsible for giving out the care, meaning they can give the very best to those who receive it.
Badar Usmani of Visiting Angels said: “The model is very different, it’s what we call carer-centric, which means we, above all else, support our care staff.
“They’re what drives this machine and the engine is often ignored or not serviced properly, it breaks down. Social care is in crisis because the engine, the fuel, is not working.
“Care workers are not recognised for their value. The front line really is care workers because they’re the ones that go into someone’s house and say, ‘You don’t look too good. Let’s get you some medication.’
“If a carer’s been with us for six months, we’ll valet their car. If they’re with us for 12, we’ll pay for its service.
“The car is an essential tool for them to do their job. If their car breaks down, they break down.
“They’re all Angels, we just give them their wings.”
Visiting Angels Manchester East currently has an 11-strong team with three more coming on board shortly.
It all starts with a free in-home consultation and they believe that actions speak louder than words, so they get to know people and apply that personal touch – as managing director Roxie Taj found out.
She said: “Other providers don’t deliver what we deliver. I’ve seen two clients and the son of one couldn’t thank us enough for what we were doing.
“He said, ‘So you’ve come out of the office to drop flowers off? Are you not busy? You look like you are.’
“I said, ‘I am but the carer’s not coming until later, so I thought I’d drop by and drop some flowers off for you.’
“He responded, ‘I’ve never met a care company like you.’ Those touches make a big difference and the feedback we’ve had is amazing.
“A carer doesn’t just make cups of tea. Some of our carers can speak three or four different languages, others don’t have that skill. Others do hair, make up, nails, they have religious knowledge – there’s so much quality to them.
“And after we get to know the client, we select the carer carefully. We share every journey with a client as if we’re family.”
Visiting Angels is not just about personal care. It has specialists in dementia care, palliative care and dealing with conditions like autism and diabetes. One person’s feedback after their care was: “We’ve got our father back.”
Badar added: “We let the client introduce their carer – how many providers do that?
“We work to the client’s needs and that stands us out, it’s catered to the individual – we do a one-hour minimum call.
“We slow down to meet the client’s needs. We have to respect the person, take some time and allow them to respond – the companionship element is completely lost.
“And one client said to us, ‘Thank you so much for the work you’ve done and the days you’ve given us with our father.
“’When you said to us our carers will change his quality of life and personality, we didn’t believe you but to experience that, I can’t thank you enough.’
“We work to four values – family, relationships, being nimble and freedom. People really respect them.”
IF YOU are interested in Visiting Angels, you can visit their website at www.visiting-angels.co.uk/manchestereast/, where you can fill in an enquiry form.
Alternatively, you can call them on 0161 850 7862 or email email@example.com.