Job title Housekeeper
Working at the Almshouses: Since 2003
1. What does your job entail?
As well as laundry, I clean the communal areas and the rooms in Jubilee House. I also clean the Very Sheltered Flats as the residents require. When people move out of the Almshouses, I am part of the team that does a very thorough deep clean.
2. What were you doing before you came to the Almshouses?
I helped run the catering unit for Suffolk Coastal for 24 years.
3. What was your first day like?
There was a matron in those days. One of the carers met me when I arrived and showed me the ropes and what she needed me to do – which was a mixture of cleaning, laundry and helping out in the kitchen.
I worked fewer hours than I do now and I spent them doing cleaning and laundry in the rented flats. There was a guest flat and a conference room in the part I worked in and a lot of stairs.
4. What do you most enjoy about your work at the Almshouses?
I enjoy all of it – but especially chatting to the people who live here and I enjoy making the place comfortable and cosy for them. We’re here for the people who live here who have often moved from an independent life in their own homes. It’s our job to make them feel that their flat (or room) is their own space and that we are there for them.
I’ve been here since 2003 – next year I will get my long service award for working at Seckford for 10 years.
5. What impact do you think your work is having?
It’s got to be kept clean – it’s got to smell clean too and it really does smell clean here.
6. What sort of training have you had?
Everything on offer – keeping older people safe, food hygiene, manual handling, infection control, COSHH, Fire, hoisting and lifting and just recently Albac training
7. What changes have you seen during your time at the Almshouses?
There were a lot of stairs when I started – I was up and down all the time with my equipment. Now it’s on levels and there are lifts! There’s a new laundry and the old flats I cleaned when I first started, have been turned into the Day Centre. The Very Sheltered Flats are new in my time and these flats are now a very big part of our service.
Every change has made the Almshouses a better place to live and work.
8. What about the future? Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
I’ll be here in 5 years!
9. What is the nicest thing anyone has said to you about your work at the Almshouses?
A visitor who said “It’s the best home we’ve been in, Seckford should be proud of you girls”.