A winning evening for TRFT at the RNN Group awards ceremony

It’s a double celebration for The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust (TRFT) thanks to two wins at last week’s RNN Group National Apprenticeship Week Awards.

Helen Thomas and Amber Thorpe with awards

Senior Healthcare Support Worker Apprentice, Amber Thorpe, was named ‘Apprentice of the Year for Care’ and the Trust received the employer award for ‘Commitment to Personal Development’.

The ceremony was held at Wharncliffe restaurant in Rotherham on Wednesday 8 February and honoured outstanding achievements of apprentices and employers within the RNN Group.

Amber, who works in the Community Hospital Admissions Avoidance Team, was praised for demonstrating “the skills of a professional and independent worker whilst also working as a member of the multidisciplinary team”. She said: “I’m so honoured to have won this award. I’ve worked really hard throughout my apprenticeship so it’s lovely to have this recognition. I’m grateful to my colleagues who have supported me throughout.”

“I decided to take this opportunity to do my apprenticeship to further my skills and knowledge within the Trust. I have enjoyed this so much that I am looking at progressing onto the Assistant Practitioner with a view of eventually becoming a qualified Physiotherapist!”

TRFT’s Penny Fisher, General Manager for the Division of Therapies, Dietetics and Community, went along to the event and was proud to see Amber accept her award. She said: “It was a privilege to attend the event, not only to see a colleague win an award but also to meet partners who are heavily involved in developing the workforce of the future. Many congratulations to Amber and the rest of the evening’s winners!”

Accepting the award on behalf of the Trust was Head of Learning and Development, Helen Thomas. She said: “I was absolutely thrilled to accept the employers award for ‘Commitment to Personal Development’ on behalf of the Trust. This recognises colleagues who go above and beyond in terms of supporting our apprentices in both clinical and non-clinical areas. 

We currently have about 150 apprentices studying level 2 to level 7 qualifications so that means at least another 150 colleagues are acting as their mentors and support infrastructure, which is no mean feat alongside the day job.”

Apprenticeships are an important factor in developing the Trust workforce. Since the introduction of the apprenticeship levy in 2017, the Trust have completed nearly 200 successful apprenticeships with many more still in progress.

Photo: (l-r) Helen Thomas, Head of Learning and Development, and Amber Thorpe, Senior Healthcare Support Worker Apprentice, collect their awards.