Bluebird Care franchise goes ‘above and beyond’ to achieve Outstanding rating

September 16, 2019

A Bluebird Care franchise in Somerset has been rated ‘Outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) following a recent inspection.

Bluebird Care Mendip, based in Frome, received the top rating for being responsive and well-led.

 
This is a significant achievement for the service, with only 3% of home care providers across England receiving the rating.

In their report, CQC inspectors praised the business for going “over and above what was expected of a community care provider.”

They commented on how the provider had looked at ways of reducing social isolation for people without it having a financial impact on them.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

For example, they had arranged trips out, parties, musical entertainment and a book club.

The CQC also highlighted that people are supported fully in every step of their care, with care professionals “supporting people to express their views and be involved in making decisions about their care” and carrying out regular reviews of care plans.

Relatives and loved ones are also included in the decision-making process, which inspectors found particularly pertinent. One service user told inspectors, “I have full control over everything, my life is my own and [the service] support me to do what I want.”

Masen Naidoo, director of Bluebird Care Mendip, said: “We are thrilled to have received an ‘Outstanding’ rating from the CQC, with a report that is testament to the hard work and dedication shown by our care team every single day. We look forward to maintaining our passion for providing high-quality care that improves people’s lives as we move forward.”

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

The service was applauded by inspectors for tailoring services to meet the needs of individuals and ensure flexibility, choice and continuity of care.

Bluebird Care Mendip’s care professionals were also singled out for praise, with inspectors finding that all staff “were passionate about providing a high standard of person-centred care which promoted people’s independence.”

When it came to the leadership, inspectors said managers “promoted an open, fair culture” that is “inclusive and empowering.”

In one example, Bluebird Care’s leaders were commended for staying up to date with emerging trends and adopting innovative ideas, such as electronic systems for people living at home.

Related: Bluebird Care Franchise

Yvonne Hignell, managing director of Bluebird Care, said: “I would like to congratulate everyone at Bluebird Care Mendip for what is such a fantastic achievement. The service is demonstrative of the high standards we promote at Bluebird Care and we are excited to see what lies in store for Bluebird Care Mendip as it goes from strength to strength.”

By SARAH CLARKE

Source: Home Care Insight

Home Care Franchise Leads Care Industry In Combating Carbon Emissions

September 15, 2019

Good Oaks Home Care has become one of the first home care franchises in the UK to become entirely carbon neutral. The company has gained the Carbon Footprint Standard accreditation following an audit of its carbon emissions.

The care franchise worked with the team at Carbon Footprint to calculate its carbon emissions across all four of its offices based in Dorset, Hampshire, Reading and Mid Sussex. Carbon Footprint evaluated the emissions that Good Oaks recorded and identified recommendations for reducing these.

 
The majority of the company’s emissions were generated by carers travelling by car to provide care at clients’ homes. The other significant source of emissions was electricity consumption across the four sites.

Good Oaks chose to offset all unavoidable carbon emissions by investing in Carbon Footprint Ltd.’s carbon offset projects and funded this centrally. Good Oaks Poole, the company’s largest office with over 100 employees, was responsible for the majority of carbon emissions. These will be offset via a tree-planting scheme in the South West, which plants trees at schools and other bio-diversity sites. The planting will take place in the Autumn.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Co-Founder of Good Oaks, Ben Ashton, said: “Becoming carbon neutral was an important investment for us to make. We didn’t want to wait for legislation to make this compulsory for smaller businesses. It is essential that other home care companies across the UK follow our lead to calculate, reduce and offset their carbon emissions. As far as we know, we’re the only home care franchise to have this accreditation and this needs to change.

“Due to the nature of the service we provide, helping support vulnerable people in their own homes, our carers currently need to use their cars to get between visits. Electric vehicles aren’t an affordable option yet and we needed to take action to reduce the impact of our carbon emissions now. Offsetting is just part of our long-term environmental strategy which will see us work hard to reduce our impact on the environment wherever we can. When our contract ends with our current energy supplier, we will also ensure our electricity is provided by 100% renewable energy.”

Carbon Footprint’s tree-planting project ensures that all trees planted are native, broad leaf species that help to preserve the UK’s biodiversity. For every tree that is planted, Good Oaks’ investment will also save one tree from being cut down in the Brazilian Amazon via Carbon Footprint’s avoided deforestation programme in South America.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

The carbon emissions from Good Oaks’ three franchisees will be offset by investment in wind power in one of Carbon Footprint’s projects in the state of Maharashtra in India. This project generates power using renewable wind energy and sells the power generated to the state grid.

Dr. Wendy Buckley, Client Director at Carbon Footprint Ltd, said: “Good Oaks has taken a leading position by assessing the carbon impact of its business – even though there is no legislative requirement for them to do this. By offsetting unavoidable emissions, they are assuring that the service they deliver to their customers is sustainable and projects support communities both near and far.”

The Good Oaks team used Carbon Footprint’s online carbon calculator to calculate the company’s carbon footprint, for the period 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019. The calculation uses the 2018 metrics developed by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) for reporting GHG emissions.

The carbon footprint assessment includes:

Building electricity consumption
Car travel
Bus and rail travel
A Carbon offset is a way to compensate for emissions by funding an equivalent carbon dioxide saving elsewhere. Everyday actions consume energy and produce carbon emissions, such as driving, flying and heating buildings. Carbon offsetting is used to balance out these emissions by helping to pay for emission savings in other parts of the world.

Planting trees removes carbon emissions when trees absorb carbon dioxide to produce oxygen and wood by photosynthesis.

Source: Franchising

Right at Home Short-listed Twice in the Franchise Marketing Awards 2019

August 28, 2019

The Franchise Marketing Awards celebrate exemplary marketing support being provided to franchisees across the country – and Right at Home is proud to be nominated twice this year.

The quality homecare provider, which has held the Best Franchise Award for three years running, has also been recognised for the quality of the online and offline marketing support given to its franchisees, in the Best Support category.

 
Right at Home is also a finalist in the Best Website category, for its franchise recruitment website which was re-launched last year. And with new care service websites also launching soon for the whole franchise network, it’s exciting times ahead!

The winners of the Franchise Marketing Awards, sponsored by Business Franchise magazine, will be announced at The National Franchise Exhibition at the NEC, Birmingham, on Friday 4 October.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Right at Home is exhibiting at the event and will be joined by franchisees and the company directors; giving visitors an excellent research opportunity as they consider the different business sectors available to them.

Competition for the marketing awards is proving fierce; the independent judging panel will be looking for examples of innovative practice and demonstrable results.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

Right at Home

Right at Home’s CEO, Ken Deary, said: “We have really raised our game when it comes to marketing support – investing in our internal support team and working with Coconut Creatives, a top-class marketing agency who really understand the needs of a franchise network – so we’re delighted to receive this recognition in the Franchise Marketing Awards.

“We provide hands-on, tailored one-to-one support for digital and PR, on top of a wide range of collateral and campaign materials that differentiate Right at Home within the quality care market and are easily tweaked at local level.

“We understand that franchise owners want flexibility, as well as the tools and platforms to put out great content that reflects their premium quality brand.”

For further information about our home care services or franchise opportunities visit this link.

Home Instead Senior Care franchise for Crewe and Nantwich closes

August 23, 2019

The Home Instead Senior Care franchise covering Nantwich and Crewe has ceased trading, it has been confirmed.

The franchise, known as Redshank Senior Care Services, was based at Frederick House on Beam Heath Way Nantwich.

 
It employed staff who care for elderly clients in their own homes.

Bosses at Home Instead head office in Warrington say all staff and clients have been kept on and are now working from head office.

The Crewe and Nantwich franchise had been run for over 10 years by Dawn Sime (pictured) until August 1.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

There are thought to be more than 50 care people who work for them part time and full time and also nearly 60 clients.

These clients are based in Nantwich, Crewe, Alsager, Sandbach, Church Lawton, Madeley, Malpas and Whitchurch.

A spokesperson for Home Instead group said: “We can confirm that Redshank Senior Care Services in Crewe has ceased trading.

“The company was operating under the Home Instead Senior Care brand.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

“Home Instead Senior Care operates a nationwide network of more than 200 franchised offices, delivering outstanding home care.

“As a responsible franchisor, Home Instead’s paramount concern is for the wellbeing of the company’s clients and their staff, including caregivers.

“We are committed to providing a quality service and to ensure continuity of care for clients.

“All of the company’s caregivers and all clients’ care has been transferred to a neighbouring franchised office in Northwich, ensuring a seamless transition.

Related: Home Instead Senior Care Franchise

“There has been no disruption to the care of any clients during this period.”

Dawn Sime and the Crewe and Nantwich franchise had moved to larger premises at Frederick House in May 2017 after leaving Worleston.

Source: The Nantwich News

Care company calls for more volunteers across Fareham and Gosport as staff celebrates award-winning year

August 17, 2019

A FAMILY-RUN domiciliary and care company, Right at Home Solent, is celebrating a successful year – but has said it needs more volunteers.

Right at Home Solent was rated ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commision last year – an accolade that only the top two per cent of companies in the UK receive – and named a Homecare top 20 care provider in the South East this year.

 
The Fareham-based company is a five-star WorkBuzz employer – an award based on employee feedback.

It is run by husband and wife team Kev Popat and Amy Popat, who set up the firm four years ago.

They provide industry-leading training to home caregivers across Fareham, Gosport, Southampton and the New Forest.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Mr Popat has called for more volunteers to help provide better care across the county.

He said: ‘We are genuinely trying to make a difference in Fareham, Gosport, Southampton and further afield and want to help more people.

‘But, to do this, we need to recruit around a hundred more volunteers over the next few years.’

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

In June, they received the customer engagement and the franchisee of the year award at the British Franchise Association Awards.

Kev said: ‘That was amazing, it was super surprising and incredibly humbling. We love what we do and so do the staff, we all care about what we do.

‘When you look in the news, it’s all about care homes closing down or people being abused in care homes and it’s all very depressing. But then there are also so many amazing stories about care homes and so much amazing stuff they do which doesn’t get talked about.

‘Just recently, we helped somebody get out of the house for the first time in over two years.’

Related: Right at Home Franchise

Right at Home Solent is a franchise of Right at Home, a care provider with more than 500 offices across the world.

It offers a range of care services such as companionship, personal care, live-in care and specialist dementia care on a short or long-term basis and offer 24/7 live-in care.

By JOSHUA TAYLOR

Source: Portsmouth

Home care company among best in West Midlands

August 14, 2019

Radfield Home Care – A HOME care provider from Herefordshire and south Shropshire has been named as one of the best providers in the West Midlands.

Radfield Home Care have been listed The Homecare.co.uk Top 20 Home Care Awards 2019 recommended home care providers in each region of the UK after clients, or their relatives, can leave feedback online,

 
Similar to Tripadvisor for the tourism industry, Homecare.co.uk provides a platform for feedback based on the quality of staff, standard of care received, office management team, dignity of services and value for money.

The awards recognise the top 20 providers in each region and nationally that have the highest user-review rating, with Radfield Herefordshire and South Shropshire achieving an average score of 9.8 out of 10.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Owner of Radfield, Kiain McKean, said: “I am delighted to be awarded in the top 20 Home Care Providers in the West Midlands.

“My team and I pride ourselves on delivery of care and support we provide to our clients. Exceptional care by exceptional people at the heart of our business.”

Radfield Home Care is the first healthcare company in the UK to become a Certifed B Corp, an ethical accreditation that puts people and the planet above profits.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

The firm’s founded, Dr Hannah MacKechnie, said: “This is the second year in a row we have been recognised in Homecare.co.uk’s Top 20 awards, but it is great to see this year our impact has been felt further with more of our franchise offices being listed.

“This award recognises how Radfield Home Care’s focus on private care services translates into high quality care that clients value in their local community.

Related: Radfield Home Care Franchise

“Recognition across multiple regions as well as a group nationally will only further support our franchise partners as clients regularly review Homecare.co.uk when deciding on a provider.”

By James Thomas

Source: Hereford Times

THE BIG INTERVIEW: Radfield Home Care co-founders Hannah MacKechnie and Alex Green

August 2, 2019

Radfield Home Care is arguably one of the fastest growing domiciliary care providers in the country, having opened 12 franchise offices in just three years.

The family business, formerly named Radfield Residential Home, ran as a care home for 26 years before being transformed into a home care company in 2008. It then started franchising in 2016.

Fresh from winning the Emerging Franchisor of the Year accolade at the bfa HSBC Franchise Awards, brother-and-sister duo Dr Hannah MacKechnie and Alex Green (pictured centre) discuss their inspiration for moving into the home care sector, their ethical approach to franchising and their ambitions to embrace technology, retain a quality workforce and expand their network across the UK.

Congratulations on being crowned the winner of the Emerging Franchisor of the Year Award 2019. How do you feel?

Hannah MacKechnie: It is a fantastic achievement for us and something we are extremely proud of. We deliberately spent a long time developing the model and support systems to ensure it provided a truly rewarding, ethical and supportive opportunity for our franchise partners. Being awarded this accolade proves the commitment we made to doing it the right way has paid off and our franchise model really is a great opportunity for people wanting to enter the sector and give something back to their local communities.

What will this mean for the business going forward?

Alex Green: It gives future franchise partners reassurance that they are joining a network that has been accredited by the UK’s leading franchise association as a unique, rewarding and successful franchise opportunity. It is also another accolade that our clients can depend on, alongside our numerous care awards. All this will help the Radfield Home Care network to grow nationally, providing more care and support, more local jobs and more community engagement.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Radfield is a family business that started out as a care home, where you both lived. What was it like growing up alongside those residents?

Hannah: It was completely unique. It was like having a big extended family with lots of extra grandparents all living at home with us. The care staff were also very influential in our lives. It gave us a lot of freedom in our childhood, but it also exposed us to how care can be in a small, family environment. It was lovely to have that inter-generational upbringing.

Hannah, you went on to work in the care home yourself. Did your family inspire you?

It was a completely natural progression. I was always helping out – we both were – in the home. And then when I was old enough it was a natural next step to start putting me on the rota. So I worked there through my teenage years and beyond.

You then went onto become a GP and it was there that you saw a gap in the market for home care…

I worked in hospitals in New Zealand for a few years and then completed my training as a GP back in the UK. I was working in practices in Shrewsbury and London and it became clear that there was a real opportunity there. I would get lots of families coming in trying to find good care for their relatives and it didn’t seem readily available. At that time, the shift away from residential care was starting to happen, so more people were choosing to stay at home, and that was the point at which we decided to get involved.

Alex, you previously had a career in finance and the community charity sector. What made you make the move into home care?

I’d done everything I wanted to achieve in the roles I had previously and I thought it was time for a change. Setting up your own business is always an exciting venture and merging Hannah’s medical experience with my knowledge across finance and community organisations seemed like a good fit.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

How long did it take you to get the business idea off the ground?

Hannah: It started when our parents were looking for succession planning for the residential home. They reached out to both of us to see whether we were interested, so that was the starting point. We initially looked at expanding the care home business and that’s when we did our market research and realised it was very clear that the shift in the market was starting to happen, and over the last 10-11 years since we’ve been trading, there has been a dramatic move away from residential care. People prefer to stay living in their own home and then they tend to go straight into a nursing home, or even stay at home and receive end of life care.

Could you tell me about how the business is set up now – how many franchises does it operate?

Hannah: We currently have 12 franchise partners and more in the pipeline, which is great. We have a national office team of 10 people and we’re in the process of recruiting more people to grow that team. So we’re building a strong national office support team for our franchise partners, which will allow us to provide the same level of service with our early franchise partners as we would if we were a much larger network.

Who would you say are your main competitors?

Hannah: In the franchise network, the business that’s most closely aligned to our model is Home Instead, which is obviously a much larger company, but they focus on caring for the elderly in the private marketplace. Obviously, there is a wide range of other franchise brands out there, many of which are American brands. There are also a lot of independent providers that operate locally and often deliver a very high quality service.

How have you seen the home care market evolve since you launched in 2008?

Hannah: The emergence of the franchise brands has been the biggest change that we have seen.

Alex: There wasn’t a national awareness of home care brands when we first launched. Bluebird Care was just launching as we started and they went straight into franchising, whereas we waited for longer. Home Instead was also coming into the market at that time. One of the other big changes has been recruitment. When we first started, the focus was on client attraction and now the focus is much more on carer attraction. Because of the growing demographic, more and more people need care. Yes, there are more competitors out there providing care, but the focus is on who can recruit well, treat their staff well and retain them.

Related: Radfield Home Care Franchise

Hannah: There has also been a big shift in the way technology is used in care. In the last few years, there has been some excellent technology solutions breaking into the sector and that’s fantastic to see. We were saying years ago ‘wouldn’t it be great if we could move to a more paper-light system?’ It’s taken a long time for the sector to embrace that type of technology and see the potential, but now that is really starting to break through.

What do you make of technologies that are used in the home to facilitate caring, such as AI?

Alex: There is a lot of evidence around using AI systems with soft toys to help people with dementia reduce anxiety, as well as virtual reality. Then there’s a lot of smart home technology centred on keeping people safe using alerts to make sure their lifestyle isn’t disrupted by a fall and things like that. I think these types of technologies will grow with time, but it’s still early days. To actually bring in an integrated system into someone’s home that really helps them is quite a complex thing to do.

Hannah: There are a lot of companies out there innovating to bring technologies through and it’s exciting to see, but I don’t think any yet provide a truly joined up service offering, and I think it will be many years before technology – if it ever will – truly disrupt the home care market because the human element is so important.

Going back to the subject of recruitment, what is your group strategy? And how do you retain your staff?

Alex: Our recruitment strategy is to communicate our values, being very clear about what we stand for as a company. In terms of retention, it’s very much about treating our carers as family. This runs through the whole business. Care is an undervalued sector in society, so challenging that has been something we have done from day one. We created our Caring for Carers Pledge that sets out how we value our carers and provide a supportive and rewarding working environment for our entire workforce.

Hannah: We have become Living Wage accredited in many of our branches and that is something we are really keen to push through the entire network where we can. Some areas are more challenging because of market forces, but it’s about recognising the hugely valuable job that people in the care sector do, which is unfortunately undervalued by society.

You were awarded the B Corp certification in 2016. That must have been a proud moment…

Hannah: It was. B Corp is a global movement celebrating ethical business and as soon as we became aware of it we felt that it was a close alignment to what we are trying to achieve. Also, having external validation that we have met that standard of being an ethical business is a fantastic communication tool for our franchise partners who are looking at which company to go with. We are currently the only home care company that has been awarded this accreditation.

Social care and government organisations are increasingly promoting home care as an effective alternative to care homes. Will there still be a place in the market for care homes in 10-20 years’ time?

Alex: I think the market we have seen in the elderly care sector has shifted. Twenty to 30 years ago, people were choosing to go into a residential home before their care needs had actually got to the point where they needed to be in a care home. It was a choice that they made to be more comfortable and have companions around them. That has shifted so people tend to stay at home to the point where they need to be in a nursing home once their care needs have developed or they require end-of-life support. So I think there will always be a need for care homes because it can be a challenge keeping someone at home safely. We can go an awfully long way to keep someone at home for a very long time, but there comes a point where, for some people, they would be better supported in a nursing home.

Hannah: We are seeing a change in the market around more of the supported living services and expanding on the model of sheltered accommodation and making them more of a chosen destination, with greater facilities and activities. I think we will see more of that American-style model coming in where those facilities can be more adaptive, so you can actually stay in that place, but the care can come to you. There will be opportunity alongside housing schemes for home care companies to be the provider of choice.

Have you thought about entering the live-in care space?

Hannah: Yes, we have. We have always been a little bit hesitant, just because of the issues around minimum wage, so it’s not something we have jumped into as we want to be very sure about the legislation around that. It’s something that in time we will look at and I think it will align very nicely with our model.

What do you think of the introductory care schemes that are popping up online?

Hannah: We are concerned because of the lack of regulation. Being a regulated service and knowing what role CQC have in keeping clients safe and ensuring recruitment practices are followed really robustly, that’s what concerns me the most about these unregulated companies that are building their models to skirt around the regulation.

Alex: The benefit of a regulated home care sector is that you have an intermediary between the carer and the client. If there’s a problem, the client can come to the intermediary, who is regulated and has a duty to perform certain actions if something goes wrong. Without that, the client is left on their own to deal with potentially very difficult problems.

Hannah: One of our core values is around advocacy and I think that’s something that gets overlooked, especially with these matching services. Often we look after elderly clients who are quite vulnerable, who don’t have family close by, so we will advocate for the client if they go into hospital for example. Matching services will not be able to provide that continuity of care and those additional extras that are fairly intangible, but have a huge value add.

What are your ambitions for the next five to 10 years?

Hannah: Our ambitions are to continue to grow throughout the UK. So at the moment we have quite a wide geographical distribution of our franchise partners, from Yorkshire down to the South coast, so it would be great to fill in some of the gaps. We are also focused on bringing in high-calibre people as franchise partners who are quality-focused. We want to bring in like-minded people that buy into those values and communicate those through their business.

Alex: We are constantly learning because we are bringing in organisations to help us, so we work with consultants who work with some of the biggest names in the care sector to help us grow. We will continue to learn, improve and develop the offering we can provide to our franchise partners.

By SARAH CLARKE

Source: Home Care Insight

‘Dementia suits’ give Bluebird Care staff reality check

July 31, 2019

Bluebird Care employees gained an insight into what it’s like to live with dementia during a recent training day at the provider’s head office.

Informed Dementia Care was invited to the office in Petersfield to deliver its ‘dementia suits experience’ to members of the Franchise Support Office team.

 
Attendees wore the ‘dementia suits’ to experience, first-hand, how ageing can impact the body and mind, and better understand how dementia can affect a person’s wellbeing and safety.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

They experienced a number of ageing symptoms and scenarios throughout the three-hour training programme, including restrictive movement, show discomfort, weighted clothing and impaired vision.

Sam Hart, Bluebird Care’s training manager, said: “As part of developing our expertise in supporting customers in their own homes, we felt the dementia suits experience programme would empower our Franchise Support Office Team and allow them to fully understand what dementia could be like.”

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

Bluebird Care said that many of the Franchise Support Office team work hard to benefit those living with dementia on a day-to-day basis, but rarely come into direct contact with many of their customers.

The training gave the team an insight into how everyday tasks can be a struggle for people living with dementia and highlighted the key signs that many people miss when dealing with an individual in distress.

Related: Bluebird Care Franchise

By SARAH CLARKE

Source: Home Care Insight

Driving Miss Daisy celebrates one year of helping people across Barnstaple

July 28, 2019

Driving Miss Daisy Barnstaple marked its first anniversary in June 2019, and those behind the scheme say they are delighted with the impact it has made in the community.

A cause which helps young, elderly and disabled people across the country to enable them to remain independent is celebrating a year in service.

 
Driving Miss Daisy Barnstaple marked its first anniversary in June 2019, and those behind the scheme say they are delighted with the impact it has made in the community. The Driving Miss Daisy brand provides specialised transportation and companion services for young, elderly or disabled people throughout the country, enabling them to remain independent.

Driving Miss Daisy UK Ltd was incorporated in 2014, and in 2016 obtained the rights to operate the brand in the UK under a 50-year licence from the New Zealand company that devised the concept. To meet the rapidly escalating demand for its services, the brand owner has also launched B3 – a directly managed company to complement its franchise operation. Driving Miss Daisy offers a caring companionship and transportation service using specialised vehicles operated and driven by highly qualified drivers. All relevant Companion drivers are trained and equipped to enable people living with physical or mental disabilities or a range of chronic conditions to live their lives to the fullest extent possible.

Related: Senior Care Franchise UK – Should You Buy UK Senior Care Franchises?

Mark Jones and Sharon Hunt started their franchise in Barnstaple, and the surrounding areas with one Daisy branded wheelchair accessible vehicle and Mark working full-time while Sharon supported him on a part-time basis. Things have progressed slowly but surely, and now they are both full-time and, in December, added another Daisy branded wheelchair accessible vehicle to their fleet and now have lots of regular clients as well as school and social care contracts in place. They are busy and getting busier all the time.

Mark said: “We both were interested in running our own business and wanted to do something that would be rewarding not only financially but emotionally as well and Driving Miss Daisy delivers on both counts. We are so pleased and satisfied that we are fulfilling the intentions we had at the start, which was to make a difference in people’s lives and retain independence and help prevent isolation and loneliness. Our clients are varied and, along with their families, the majority are more like friends than clients now.

Related: Care Franchises – Search Franchise Reviews Directory

“We have undertaken various types of bookings including appointments to the hospital, doctors, podiatrist, dentist, physio, hairdresser, vets as well as airport and school runs. We regularly take people to garden centres, shopping, lunches etc. We also have a small number of contracts in place with for schools and social care and provide transport on an ad-hoc basis for hospital discharges at the North Devon District Hospital. Over the year we have built up close working relationships with some care homes in the area too.”

Sharon added: “We have helped some of the most vulnerable in our community, including people living with dementia, visual impairment, mental health issues and all types of disabilities. Part of our service is that we are insured to go into the home and help our clients with bags, locking doors, putting the cat out etc. We have helped out with so many things like doing the bins, laying compost, filling out calendars, fixing clocks, inserting hearing aids, replacing batteries, putting beds together, taking items up to the hospital and so much more. We have even rescued one of our clients, who is a real character, from being stuck fast in a doorway on his motorised wheelchair.

Related: Driving Miss Daisy Franchise

“As time goes on, more and more people and organisations are becoming aware of our driving and companion service and what we can offer.”

Sharon gave the example of Mr Buttle, an 87-year-old retired Vicar who has several health issues including macular degeneration, breathing problems and mobility issues. He lived in Saunton for over 20 years and moved into a flat in Braunton after the death of his second wife around nine years ago. The flat was near to a bus stop which meant he would be able to get out easily, which he did and visited Chivenor, Bideford and South Molton regularly for outings and lunch.

Sharon explained: “He also went on several coach holidays, but when the buses stopped, he started to become isolated. The local GP surgery made him aware of the lunch club held twice a week at Christ Church in Braunton, which is run by volunteers and they would help get him there but, it meant walking some distance to meet them. His mobility and balance was getting worse, and he finally admitted that he had had some falls and lost his confidence, which was difficult for someone who had been a part of the community for all his working life and also having travelled widely since his first wife died 35 years ago.

“His daughter Selina Davey discovered our Driving Miss Daisy leaflet in the Lloyds Pharmacy in Braunton, and that is when he got his freedom and independence back again.”

Selina added: “We know absolutely that he is in safe hands and appreciate all that Mark and Sharon do which is over and above what we expected, and the updates we get are great as he forgets to tell us what’s happening.”

Mark said: “We have built up a fantastic relationship with Mr Buttle and his family, and he is part of the ‘Daisy family’ now. Every time we pick him up we ensure his hearing aids are in place, he’s got the right glasses, help him on with his coat and hat etc. then lock-up. We walk him into the lunch club, hospital appointment or macular society meeting and get him settled and then do everything in reverse when we pick him up ensuring he is all settled back in his flat before we leave. We have stopped off to buy birthday cards, got his walker fixed and nothing is too much trouble for a Daisy.

“No story embodies the Driving Miss Daisy motto of “We’re family when family can’t be there” more than this.”

If you want to find out more about Driving Miss Daisy Barnstaple ring Mark and Sharon on 07868 013268.

By Lewis Clarke

Source: Devon Live

Right at Home opens new franchise office in London

July 18, 2019

National home care provider Right at Home has opened a new franchise office in North London.

The new service will provide care and support to people living in Enfield.

 
Managing director Krish Nair gave up a career in IT to open the business, after seeing two of his close family members with dementia and multiple sclerosis receiving care and support at home.

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Speaking on his newly opened business, Nair said: “I have big plans for Enfield, to be the homecare provider of choice in my area and to be a brand synonymous with trust, providing outstanding homecare.”

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Right at Home provides personal care, hospital-to-home assistance, live-in care and specialist dementia care to people living in their own homes.

The provider recently celebrated its eighth ‘Outstanding’ CQC rating in 15 months.

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By SARAH CLARKE

Source: Home Care Insight