Unsung hero Sylvia hailed for her care
ABIG-HEARTED unsung hero from Widnes who has dedicated what could have been her retirement to looking after others in her own home has received an award to honour her service.
Sylvia Roberts, 76, received a ‘certificate of recognition’ from Halton’s mayor and mayoress John and Marjorie Bradshaw in a ceremony in the mayor’s parlour at Runcorn Town Hall in recognition of her work as an adult placement carer.
Originally from Garston, Sylvia and her husband owned a small shop but moved to Runcorn where Sylvia started working as a care assistant for residents with Alzheimer’s and dementia. This involved helping them to wash and dress and generally looking out for their health and wellbeing during home visits.
A move to Widnes in 2001 meant she was unable to continue, and for a year or so she did not work, enjoying a life of retirement.
Following the move, Sylvia, an avid reader, noticed an ad at Widnes Library asking for ‘people who may have a few hours to spare’.
Sylvia rang the number and soon began working as an adult placement carer in July 2002, with the process taking about nine months and involving checks to make sure her home was suitable.
The work involves looking after adults who need support due to age, illness or disability – in her own home.
Sixteen years later, Sylvia can support three people at a time in her own home, where they ● Sylvia with Cllrs John and Marjorie Bradshaw spend time chatting, laughing and watching TV together with any other family members who are around.
Sylvia said that she receives a lot of satisfaction from the work and there is nothing about the job that she dislikes.
A natural ‘mother’, Sylvia spends most of Sunday in the kitchen preparing meals for the week, she loves cooking and likes to give people home cooked meals.
Fish, chips and peas, hotpots, mince and mash, jam cream roll with custard are favourites.
She is paid tax free, but is now considering a second retirement as she nears her 80th birthday – but said ‘it all depends on her health’.
Stiofan O’Suillibhan, adult social care divisional manager, said “People like Sylvia are very hard to find.
“Committed to caring for others and a sense of humour are some of Sylvia’s many attributes and we are very lucky that she saw our advert 17 years ago.”
Cllr Tom McInerney (fami- lies) said: “We need carers to look after people within their own families now more than ever. ‘‘
For all enquiries call Halton council on 0151 511 6677.