Home care company celebrates big expansion, its first year in business & award nominations

A home care company, launched by a former Shropshire racehorse breeder following the inspiration of caring for her own grandmother, is celebrating an expansion, its first year in business and getting through to award finals.

Home Instead Senior Care Shrewsbury, Ludlow and Oswestry has grown in just 12 months, from a team of two people to a company now employing over 35 people – and it is still recruiting.

The franchise is also celebrating after being short-listed as a finalist in three categories of the 2014 Shropshire Partners in Care Awards. These include the award for Promoting Dignity and Respect in Care and Carer of the Year awards in both domiciliary care and dementia care.

Rachael Birchall found caring for her grandmother such a rewarding experience, that it prompted her to leave her equestrian career of 20 years and establish a home care company that could give the same standards of one-to-one care and companionship that she had been able to provide.

“Being short-listed as award finalists in our first year is wonderful news and a real cherry on the cake for us,” said Miss Birchall.

“We’ve grown enormously over the last 12 months, much quicker than anticipated. I think that’s because we’re accommodating and flexible. We aim to provide people with the services that they want, exactly when they want them – not the other way around. And we believe that companionship is just as important to older people as personal care or help around the home.

“We’ve also been very fortunate to find some very special people to work with us as caregivers and that is very much borne out by the fact that we have two finalists short-listed in the Carer of the Year awards.”

To accommodate its expansion the company has just moved to larger offices at Leaton Knolls, near Shrewsbury.

Miss Birchall, 42, was a successful racehorse breeder at her family’s champion stud farm Helshaw Grange, at Tern Hill, near Market Drayton for 20 years. When her widowed 93-year-old grandmother came to live on the farm she became her main carer for the last two years of her life.

“After she died I nolonger wanted to breed racehorses. Instead I wanted to go out into the world and make a real difference to the lives of other older people,” she said.

She became a franchise partner of the national award-winning home care group Home Instead Senior Care, covering Shrewsbury, Ludlow, Oswestry and the surrounding rural areas.

Miss Birchall plans to recruit another 50 caregivers over the next year.

The winners of the Shropshire Partners in Care Awards will be announced at an awards ceremony on March 28 at the Lord Hill Hotel, Shrewsbury, featuring guest speaker Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson.

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Pete White Pete White

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