Inspiring stories of the people behind our care homes

As part of ‘Glad to Care Week,’ Aria Care is proud to celebrate the dedication and passion of our caring team. This week is a special opportunity to highlight the deep commitment and warm, empathetic approach that our colleagues bring to their roles every day. At Aria Care our ethos of ‘care from the heart’ shapes every interaction and is the foundation of our mission to provide supportive, respectful, and excellent care to our residents.

Our values of empathy, respect, collaboration, excellence, and integrity are more than just words – they are the principles that guide us in creating a caring community. This community supports the wellbeing and happiness of our residents, their families, and our colleagues, ensuring that Aria Care is not just a provider of care, but a partner in the journey of life, especially during times when our residents need us most. During ‘Glad to Care Week,’ we are delighted to share the voices of some of our team members whose personal stories and insights shine a light on the passion and commitment that drive us every day. These individuals are at the core of our community, demonstrating the depth of care and the personal touch we bring to our work.

Inspiring training and support – Caroline’s story

Caroline Thorne, Regional Trainer and former Care Assistant

Caroline’s journey with Aria Care, from Care Assistant to Regional Trainer, exemplifies our commitment to professional growth and high-quality care. She said, “What I enjoy most about my role is being able to visit our communities and meeting our residents, along with delivering training to colleagues so that they are able to provide support in the correct way.”

Her enthusiasm for her role is clear, “My motivation to coming to work every day is that I love my job and I am part of an amazing team that supports each other. I’m so grateful for the support and encouragement I have been given by the whole team at Aria Care which has allowed me to progress.” This statement reflects the collaborative and supportive culture we cherish, where everyone is encouraged to learn, grow, and contribute to our shared goals. Caroline’s dedication to training ensures that our care is delivered with knowledge, empathy, and a personal touch.

Mentorship and growth – Sonia’s story

Sonia Da Silva, Regional Director and qualified nurse

Sonia reflects on how she began her journey into the care sector, “I still remember my first day at work, as if it was today. A new employee, from a foreign country, different rules and regulations, everything was new to me. I was so overwhelmed, feeling homesick, but most importantly I felt very welcome, the new colleagues received me with a big smile, and they were immediately available to help me.”

Sonia has a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of what it means to be a leader in the care sector. She said, “To me motivation is an essential part of any workplace, and I believe I have been playing that role as a mentor to my team members. Aria Care has great opportunities for growth and development.”

She follows a powerful guiding philosophy, “A great piece of advice I have is never give up, wait for the right time, follow your heart, never be limited by other’s limited imaginations. These are some of the quotes I tend to remind myself every day. With perseverance and commitment, you can do great things.” Sonia inspires her team to strive for excellence and her approach helps create an environment where each team member feels valued and empowered to make a difference.

Everyday differences – Kayleigh’s story

Kayleigh Frulli, Home Manager, Magna Care Centre

Kayleigh captures the essence of Aria Care’s approach to daily care. She said, “Every day is so very different, and each day there is a chance you will make a difference to an individual’s life. It could be a resident, a family member, a colleague or a general visitor.”

She reminds us that care is about those small, meaningful interactions, “Just a small gesture, a smile can be enough to make someones day. I enjoy the social interaction, the small passing chats, or the big meaningful conversations. I enjoy unlocking my office and knowing that within a minute of turning the key it will be heard by resident Mary who greets me with a happiest good morning you will ever hear!”

Kayleigh’s words highlight how our colleagues are not just caregivers but are the heart and soul of the communities they serve. With a wealth of experience, she has many fond memories, “After 14 years of service at Magna, it really is so hard to narrow just one moment that is the most rewarding. Some that jump out include the moment I watched a husband and wife reunited for the first time in over a year, their beaming smiles and tears of joy as they reached out and held hands. The magical moment of watching a gentleman, named Tom, walk from being restricted to bed. He arrived to receive end of life care but I just knew his story wasn’t over yet. He also learnt to paint with his left hand and enjoy art again.”

Each moment and every gesture contribute to the supportive and caring atmosphere that defines Aria Care.

Bringing joy and connection – Katrina’s story

Katrina Swallow, Deputy Manager, Denham Manor, and trainee nurse

Katrina is a young woman who has achieved a lot in a short space of time from the moment she started as a domestic in 2020, “I became the Deputy Manager of the home at aged 21 and I just feel so grateful to have been given the opportunity to do so. Aria Care has definitely given me so many new opportunities that have brought me to the place I am today.”

Katrina speaks about the joy and connection that are central to her approach to care, “I like to think that I bring a positive attitude and a smile to work every day. Our job is so rewarding; we are with the residents and their families so much that they become our families.

This sense of extended family is what makes Aria Care special. Katrina’s commitment to making each day brighter for those she cares for shows in her willingness to go above and beyond, “What is just a normal day of work for us, could be one of the hardest times of their lives, and I know that I can make those days just a little bit brighter. What I can do for someone to improve their day, I will. I love sharing a joke, or singing a song or even just sitting and enjoying the sunshine – it’s the little things that motivate me and make me think I make a difference.”

Her enthusiasm is a testament to the emotional connections our teams develop with residents and their families, and her approach exemplifies how our care teams put their hearts into everything they do.

Beyond the daily routine – Ray’s story

Ray, 2nd Chef to Hospitality Manager, Riverside Place

Ray believes if you work from the heart the rest follows. He said, “For me celebrating resident’s birthdays or any special events in their life is very rewarding. Everyone has a story to tell, and I feel privileged that they let me be a part of it. I enjoy listening to their life’s journey and learning from it.”

For Ray working at Riverside Place is more than a job, “Every day I look forward to a challenge on how to make that day special in a way that is different from yesterday and yet memorable. Residents with dementia have a very special place in my heart and I am proud that even if they don’t remember my name or who I am, they remember the good feeling of that moment simply by having good conversation or just a friendly face.”

And he loves being part of a warm and encouraging team, “Aria care has been supporting me from day one and has always been open to suggestions and new ideas. They have given me training on how to be better at what I do. I was given the opportunity to meet and speak to our Regional Hospitality Director which I feel supported me to have a clear vision of what was expected of me and my team. There is a very good atmosphere, teamwork, and collaboration between different departments that makes a lot of difference.”

These stories from Caroline, Sonia, Kayleigh, Katrina and Ray illustrate the passion, dedication, and personal commitment that drive Aria Care. We are more than a provider of care services – we are a community that cares deeply, supports each other, and makes a difference every day where everyone is treated with dignity, respect, and love.