Lymington care home group celebrates nursing excellence.

Lymington care home group celebrates nursing excellence.

ENCOURAGING LEADERSHIP. Participants at Colten Care's Nurses Day conference at the AFC Bournemouth stadium.

Lymington-based care home group, Colten Care, brought together nearly 100 team members for a celebration of nursing.


Among the participants at the one-day conference were more than 70 RGNs representing all 20 homes run by the family-owned group.

Held at the AFC Bournemouth football stadium, the event was designed to encourage nurses to develop their leadership skills while reaffirming the company’s commitment to invest in nursing despite recruitment challenges facing the whole care sector.

The keynote presentation was given by Lymington sailor and adventurer, Manley Hopkinson, who sought to draw parallels between the leadership challenges of nursing and the kinds of decisions inherent in ocean sailing and polar exploration.

An ex-Royal Navy officer, Manley was a skipper on the 2000 BT Global Challenge round-the-world yacht race, leading a crew of volunteers, including novices, for nine months on a 32,000-mile journey ‘the wrong way round the globe’. He was also part of the three-man team that won the inaugural race to the Magnetic North Pole, facing polar bear attacks and continual sub-zero temperatures.

“Nurses may not consider themselves as leaders but they are," commented Manley. "If you are helping, guiding and influencing people within your care then you are a leader. It’s about maintaining humanity as you deliver leadership. You take on the joy of leadership combined with the clinical side. I call it compassionate leadership. I asked people to consider compassionate leadership being not just for those directly in their care but also for families, team members and the wider community.”

Presentations from clinical experts covered subjects such as nurses’ professional revalidation and how Colten Care supports nurse learning and development. 


“I thoroughly enjoyed the event," added Manley. "There was a lovely energy about it. Everyone made me feel very welcome and I felt the audience were hugely receptive.”

Alongside the conference, there was a trade show that enabled attendees to find out what is new on the equipment side to help in their work.

Janie Pearman, Home Manager at Belmore Lodge in Lymington, and a former casualty nursing sister, said: “It was a great idea for nurses to get together. The day was both informative and inspiring and we came away buzzing with ideas. I cannot believe what a morale boost this has been to our nursing team.”

Elaine Farrer, Colten Care Operations Director, said: “This was the first dedicated nurses’ conference of its size we’ve ever held. It was all about celebrating nursing excellence. We wanted our nurses to understand our appreciation for the significant professional role they have in the care of our residents.”



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