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Llanelli care worker Lisa Randell awarded BEM in Queen’s New Year’s Honours List

A Carmarthenshire County Council care worker has been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List for her services to health and social care during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lisa Randell, a support worker at Llys Y Bryn Residential Home in Llanelli, has been awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for the dedication and determination she has shown throughout the crisis.

When the home experienced a significant outbreak of Covid 19, Lisa’s leadership skills were demonstrated in abundance at the most challenging of times.

She had already taken on a temporary, more senior position as another senior support worker had to shield, but with many staff unwell and not in work and then the manager having to work from home, Lisa quickly found herself taking full responsibility for the running of the home.

Lisa managed the home, along with the support of care staff, with a determination and willpower to protect and provide dignity for the residents in her care.

Many residents were very unwell, but she still ensured that families were kept informed of their loved ones’ progress. She arranged for families to provide photographs of themselves and had them placed onto cushions for the residents so they could give them a hug.

Lisa didn’t go home at the end of her 12-hour shifts but stayed at the home to make sure that all her work was completed. She also supported her colleagues with her upbeat nature and sense of humour, always looking on the bright side even at the most difficult times – and these were very difficult times.

Lisa and her family have also raised over £2,000 for the residents’ amenity fund, which will go towards a memorial garden.

Lisa, from Llanelli, who has worked for the council for 11 years, said she couldn’t believe she had received this honour.

“It seems unreal, and I don’t really understand why,” she said. “I am doing a job I love and I can’t see what I have done any different to anyone else.

“It has been a horrendous few months, and at the care home, we are all a family. I am not sure how I did it (run the home), it is all a blank to be honest. But I had so much support from my colleagues and we all did it as a team, everyone went over and above.”

The council’s Executive Board Member for Social Care, Cllr Jane Tremlett, said: “I am delighted that Lisa has been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.

“During the Covid crisis, the situation at the care home was something none of us could have foreseen and Lisa really came to the fore. Her role during this critical time was nothing short of inspirational.

“Lisa has been working as a care worker for many years and her determination and willingness to learn is an example to everyone. Her contribution to older vulnerable residents has been huge, the full impact of which is impossible to measure.

“I would like to thank Lisa and all our frontline staff for everything they have been doing, and continue to do, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, they really are extraordinary and we are very proud of them all.”

Amazingly, this is the second British Empire Medal for Llys y Bryn. Manager Lyndsay McNicholl was also recognised for her work during the Covid-19 pandemic in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List earlier this year.

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