Award for ‘inspirational’ Desmond

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A 90-year-old man, described as “inspirational” has been awarded a Volunteer of the Year trophy.

Desmond Knight won the award at the Barchester Care Awards 2015 for helping residents at Harton Grange Care Home, in South Shields

 Desmond, first started visiting the care home when his wife, Irene, was living there and he developed a close relationship with staff and residents during that time.

 When Irene died, Desmond continued to visit the home to support the activities coordinator.

 The judges were impressed by Desmond’s passion for helping others and described him as ‘an inspiration’.

 Lesley Gregg, general manager at Harton Grange, said: “Desmond is at Harton Grange most days chatting with the residents who live here. Desmond listens to the residents and if they like a particular book or piece of music or anything that Desmond can get he goes out of his way to find this for the residents.

 “Desmond does hand massages while engaging residents in various topics. As Desmond says, being of the same age group he can relate to them. The ladies love Desmond painting their nails and keeping them company. He takes people out on day trips and has even learned new skills such as Qigong seated exercise to help people more.

 “He’s a part of the family here and everyone is so grateful for his kind-heartedness and dedication.”

 On receiving the award, Desmond said: “I can’t believe it, this is such an honour. I have to thank all the staff at Harton Grange as without them I wouldn’t be here. This award is not only for me but all of the staff at Harton Grange, my second family.”

This is a day I will never forget.”

The Barchester Care Awards recognises glowing examples of care in Barchester’s care

homes and there are 17 categories in total. Barchester has over 200 care homes across the

UK and over 1,000 nominations were submitted for this year’s Barchester Care Awards.