Brand-New £250,000 Resource Centre in Wolverhampton is Now Open

We are delighted to announce the opening of our brand-new Resource Centre, Progress House.

The brand-new state-of-the-art facility will help individuals with additional needs learn new skills, gain employment, access therapies, participate in activities and make new friends.

Set to benefit hundreds of Black Country families, the £250,000 multipurpose space is a result of 12 months of development. It boasts a fully equipped kitchen, sensory room, computer/quiet rooms and an open plan space to host group activities.

At Progress, we are committed to preventing family breakdowns, increasing resilience and reducing dependency. The Resource Centre helps us achieve this by blending a range of community-based services to support semi-independent and independent living.

The inspirational new site was officially opened by Mr John Crabtree OBE, Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of The West Midlands, accompanied by our founder and CEO Bal Dhanoa, Managing Director Claire Rogers and the rest of the Progress Team.

John Crabtree OBE said: “I had the great pleasure to be invited to open the Resource Centre and to learn about the forward-thinking and creative ideas being presented by Progress.

“The organisation has created a range of services which will be delivered and coordinated from this new facility. It will provide early intervention, learning and education, preventative support, and solutions to avoid or reduce crisis situations that come at a high cost to all involved. I wish Progress every success in its latest venture.”

Bal, our Founder and CEO said:

“Covid-19 has definitely had an impact on how care and specialist services have been delivered, and as we head back to a more normal life, we want to make sure we have the facilities and the people in place to help families in the Black Country,”

“The Resource Centre will provide a hub for local children and young adults to come together and access skills and support that will help them live the most rewarding lives possible.”

“We have a big focus on giving people the right to live independently, and our new Resource Centre will further support this objective,” added Claire Rogers, Managing Director.

For further information, please visit www.progresscare.co.uk. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Progress Celebrate Outstanding OFSTED Rating

We are absolutely delighted to announce that following an inspection by OFSTED in November 2021, we have been awarded the highest possible rating of ‘OUTSTANDING’.

The inspectors were full of praise and noted that:

“Children are cared for by carers who know them incredibly well and make exceptional progress from their starting points.”

“Children have excellent relationships with foster carers and benefit from stable, long-term placements.”

“The exceptional nurture and care children receive from their carers means that children feel valued and part of their fostering family.”

“Child-centred practice by foster carers and staff is driven by a therapeutic understanding of children’s needs with an excellent wrap-around service to ensure that everybody works together.”

“All carers spoken to shared that it did not matter who they spoke to in the agency, it felt like they knew them and their children well.”

“New foster carers state that they feel welcomed and valued by the agency.”

“The registered manager is a strong advocate for children and has ensured that children and carers have bespoke support so that children’s needs are met to a high standard”

“The registered manager is passionate, dynamic, and inspirational. She is highly visible and helped the agency to grow and develop. The registered manager has been at the forefront of the agency’s drive for excellence.”

“Foster carers are prepared well for their role, which contributes to the high levels of care and stability for children.” And “foster carers are provided with a range of training that equips them with skills and knowledge to meet the individual needs of the children placed in their care.”

 

 

We are thrilled with the result!

We are beyond thrilled to have received this feedback from OFSTED. Over the last few years, the staff at Progress have worked tirelessly to improve and develop the agency into the caring and nurturing space it is today.

Operations Manager Tina at Progress said:

 “I am delighted with the honour of achieving an outstanding inspection- the immense hard work and support by everyone in the Progress family has brought excellence in care and support.  We pride ourselves in quality and this been ratified by OFSTED and that feels wonderful.”

A fitting celebration

Through their hard work, dedication and care, every single member of the Progress family has contributed to our OFSTED ‘Outstanding’ rating and therefore deserves to be recognised and rewarded.

To commend this achievement as a team, we held a celebration and handed out awards to staff to express our recognition and thanks.

Once again, a huge thank you goes out to every member of the Progress team who has played an integral part in helping us accomplish this accolade. We are immensely proud of this achievement.

Click here to read the full OFSTED report.

If you would like to explore a fostering career with a family-owned, OFSTED-rated ‘Outstanding’ agency that cares, speak to our team today.

Progress Support Worker Collects Donations for New Cross Hospital

A big ‘well done’ to one of our Residential Support Workers Venice Campbell, who has been collecting donations for a local mother and baby hostel and the neonatal ward at New Cross Hospital.

Venice became increasingly aware of the number of perfectly-good toys going to waste and ending up in landfills every year. Working in the care industry, Venice knew there were children out there that could benefit from these toys, so she started collecting donations of unwanted toys around her area then donated them to a local mother and baby unit and New Cross Hospital.

Venice said:

‘’I have been with Progress for 2 and a half years now. Since being at Progress I have built upon my knowledge and experience.

A part of my role is ensuring that the children live their best lives whilst in our care.  I do this by ensuring that I plan fun activities, outings, and celebrations to bring joy, fun and laughter into their lives. The best reward is seeing a smile on the young person’s face and knowing that i contributed to it.

The company has given me opportunities to Progress professionally, developing my skills and expertise. Working at Progress Care I not only get to share my culture with the staff but the young people also.

I am lucky enough to work with such fantastic team members in Progress who have different skills that they bring to the team which helps all-around caring for and meeting the individual need of the young people. There is always someone on hand to help or give me advice when needed.

I wanted to do the charity fundraiser because being around the young people made me realise that not all parents are able to get the support that we provide for our young people.

Covid has had such a big knock-on effect on many single parents/couples as they have missed out on big celebrations such as gender reveals, baby showers and christenings. I wanted to be able to give back to those parents who have missed out. ‘’

Venice has collated donations for the following two causes –

http://www.babybluesappeal.co.uk/

New Cross Hospital – Neonatal Ward

She also hopes to drop these off with some of the young people from Stourbridge House Children’s service.

We want to take this opportunity to say a big ‘well done’ to Venice for her selfless, hard work!

Sponsorship announcement!

We are pleased to officially reveal that we will be sponsoring Warstones Wanderers FC for the 21/22 season! As we are so passionate about supporting our local community, we pride ourselves in going above and beyond to showcase this in any way we can – hence why we were keen to get involved with this venture.

To discuss this further, we caught up with the manager over at the Football Club, Leon; here’s what he had to say:

“As the club is expanding, we will be relying on external sponsorship, so any support we can get is amazing as it means our chairman Mick doesn’t have to take money from his pocket as all match and kit fees will be covered.

In regards to the club’s future, we aim to work top-down and bottom-up simultaneously. With these costs covered, this gives the chance to do exactly that for each of the different teams. With your sponsorship, our teams will grow in confidence – making a significant difference, especially for some younger kids starting as it will be their first game. All in all, this sponsorship is, of course, very much appreciated and well-received as it’s also a burden taken off micks shoulders in the sense that we as a club can utilise the funds that we do have elsewhere.”

We also spoke to the Clubs’ Chairman Mick. Here’s what he had to say:

“I started the club 20 years ago; since then, we’ve grown, and we now have different divisions within the club. As we are now reaching different levels within our teams, every little bit of help does go a long way. This is a great collaboration for all involved, and we are looking forward to the future and where this takes us.”

We look forward to the rest of the journey and what’s to come!

5 minutes with…Julian

The community support worker on the importance of mentors, giving back, and listening.

I am a head of the year in a mainstream secondary school and have been doing this for the last thirteen years. Some of the children in the school are in care or have SEN (special education needs). I wanted to gain a deep understanding of where the young people were coming from for my professional development. If I can understand them and their feelings, I could support them.

I was involved in sports as a youngster. I played a lot of basketball and got mentored by world-class coaches. There was also a Headteacher who supported me at school. I learned about dedication, discipline and working hard in my formative years. These experiences inspired me as an adult to share the knowledge they gave me with other young people.

Looking at mental health provision is under my remit in school. I want to understand the behaviours the children were showing. Why is a young person sad or anxious? Some research led me to find out about Progress and a community support worker role. By becoming a support worker, I knew that I would understand how to support young people effectively.

It is important to listen to young people and allow them to talk. I try to find solutions for their problems. There was a pupil (in care) that arrived at school upset. Within half an hour of the start of the first lesson, he was in detention because he had forgotten his PE kit and missed the class. The young person was upset that he had lost the timetable, and the care home he was in knew nothing about this. I contacted his support workers and emailed the timetable to the home. The support workers placed the sheet on his bedroom wall. If the tools are there, a young person can take responsibility for themselves.

The first session with young person in community care is a challenge. You are entering a young person’s life, and they do not want to let go of their home setting or meet anyone new. The key is to listen and engage. Find their interest. For example, I know nothing about gaming. The young person in my care educates me about a game that he is playing. That conversation will lead to other things in life.

I like to give back. I do not want to see people stuck in a rut. If I can support and change a life, I will. I want to think that if I were in the same situation, someone would do the same for me. My coaches, parents, grandparents, friendship group, have all played a part in me being able to give back.

There must be role models for young people. Social media can easily influence young people by having someone look out for them, it can change their lives.

If you want to make difference in the lives of others, visit our recruitment page and apply for a role at Progress today.

5 minutes with…Tom

The Team Leader at Oak Cottage, on the benefits of working together, his life experience, and being yourself at Progress.

I grew up in challenging circumstances. I was brought up in care and was in foster care too. So, I can relate to the young people I care for and empathise with them.

I can be myself at Progress. Working in care is better than working in an office. I have done both, and I can honestly say that working in care has allowed me to be myself. You will not be thrown into the deep end at Progress. I was given plenty of time to do all my training and got to shadow senior staff too.

Working collaboratively is important. One of the things that I love about Progress is that all the staff are open and accessible. I am pretty curious by nature, and I ask many questions because I want to do well. When I first started working here, the staff helped me gain more confidence in my role.

I have experience to share. For example, if a young person has sensory overload, I can show my colleagues what triggers they need to avoid or what activities they should engage the young person in. If someone is unsure, I am there to help. Providing support is what we do.

Supporting my team is part of my job. As Team Leader I make sure a proper handover has been done. This means the night staff know what has happened in the day with the young people and what they need to look out for. I can then relax knowing the young people are safe and happy, and I have made sure all staff know what they are doing.

This is a career for life. I have a lot to learn, but I would love to be a manager or foster carer. So many children across the UK need some extra support. If you want to change a child’s life – this is for you.

If you want to make difference in the lives of others, visit our recruitment page and apply for a role at Progress today.

 

Progress turns 21!

As we begin our year long festivities celebrating 21 years of supporting children and young people, Progress Chief Executive Bal Dhanoa and Chief Financial Officer Raj Dhanoa have a special message for our staff.

“Thank you all for your continued support, commitment, and dedication to Progress.

  • We are proud of our journey so far, we continue to make happy memories for our young people, so when they reach ‘adulthood’ they can reflect back and think of their time at Progress and what that means for them
  • We are proud to give stability to those needing long term care
  • We are proud to provide a range of amazing support services and care options to so many in our communities through our Hub teams
  • We are proud to expand our residential care portfolio across the Midlands – each home have their own unique offerings
  • We are proud of our foster carers, some whom have been with us right from the start of our journey and all those joining us now and, in the future

Reflecting on the time when this journey started for me, it was just a vision of what can be achieved. We started from humble beginnings and I am so blessed and proud of how the family of Progress has grown over the 21 years. Our journey has been incredible with many ripples and mountains to climb along the way. I am so proud to have such amazing people, who have been part of this journey and truly make a difference and uphold strong values as we continue to make memories.

During this journey we have had so many wonderful staff that have worked with us and developed their career paths – some moving on to achieve their own journeys and even retuning back to us. There are many of our staff who have worked with us for several years and developed their skills and moved on to senior positions within Progress. To all of you our heartfelt thank you.

There are those angels in our journey who have truly understood my vision, my passion, and have put up with my madness, in good and bad times, and have enabled my deepest desire to provide the best that we can to all vulnerable young people in our care. They remain constant, focused, always protecting us, and have been there from the start. A special thank you to our MD Claire. Without you this journey would not have been possible.

As we continue to prosper we hope and pray that we can continue to serve and make a difference in people’s lives, and continue to improve career opportunities for you all as you go through this wonderful journey with us. Always look to the future and learn from the past!

Happy 21st birthday to Progress as we all look forward to celebrating many more in years to come”.

Bal & Raj.

Keep visiting Progresscare.co.uk for further 21st celebration updates. #progress21

My Progress experience: Harry

My name is Harry.

I am a teenager with Autism.

After suffering several losses within my close family, I could not understand and control my feelings, which led to my behaviours hurting those closest to me. I lacked confidence and did not like leaving the house. My home is where I feel comfortable and safe. The thought of any activities outside gave me anxiety, and it would take 30 minutes to coax me out of the house.

Progress matched me with a Support Worker, Julian.  We clicked and talked about working together to explore ways of increasing my confidence.

Julian and I

As Julian started to visit me once a week, I felt my confidence grow. I was able to open up to Julian about gaming and other things that are important to me. We would go for a walk down the canal and talk about things in my life. I could use these conversations and create scenarios in my head that would help me overcome personal hurdles.

I love gaming, but Julian knew nothing about PlayStation or Xbox. I took it upon myself to educate Julian about the games I play. Julian is getting better, but I still win every time we play!

Julian is not just my ‘carer’; he is somebody I can talk to and take guidance from.

Getting out of my comfort zone

I now do activities I had never regularly done before. For example, for the first time, I went out to eat and paid the bill myself. A year ago, I would never have had the confidence to speak to someone and ask for anything.

Remember when I said it used to take 30 minutes to coax me out of the house? Now I am happy to leave straight away.

Happier than I have ever been

I recently made the transition from secondary school to college, and I enjoy learning.

I have also started going to the gym and have taken an interest in health & nutrition. Progress has helped me gain further knowledge about health & nutrition with online training to stay fit and eat well.

Being able to manage my feelings has now helped me become a happier and more active person!

Working in Care Stories: Deana

My name is Deana, and I am a residential manager for Progress. I have been working with children and young people in residential care for approximately 13 years. 
I have seen a lot of young people come and go, but one young person will remain in my thoughts and heart for a long time.  

I remember going to visit David, at school, in 2014. He was taking part in a school play rehearsal where the song ‘Running Bear’ was being played. I was introduced, by name, to the class and over he came to me with a feather in his hand, placed it in my hair and then stroked my cheek and chin saying, ‘nice beard’.  

I just knew from that moment on I could work with David and make a difference in his life.  

The care package started off with help in the community, then onto shared care over the weekends and then with him finally coming into residential care full time. 

Don’t get me wrong things were not always easy and routines and schedules didn’t always go to plan. We had our up’s, which there were many and we also had our down’s. 

Days out with the family were very difficult and so did not happen often. I remember taking David to the theatre to see his first live musical, Mamma Mia. He absolutely loved it. David was standing up in the audience singing and dancing. I remember crying that day! He then went on to see many theatre productions. He used to love going to the cinema, shopping, bowling, and eating out. I remember taking him to a local restaurant and his favourite pudding was chocolate fudge cake. No matter how many dinners David had there was always room for pudding. 

David was introduced to the local church, where he would attend the monthly coffee mornings. He would go and have his breakfast, buy cakes, and raffle tickets and always managed to win. He won the hearts of all those that attended. I would sometimes meet him down there on my days off and he would sit with my baby holding him and once asked for a photo of them together. Did I get too close I can hear you saying, probably yes, I did, but then I would not be doing my job if I didn’t. 

He made such progression with us at Progress Care and grew up into a lovely young man. David made me proud to want to take him out. He was a funny, caring and an entertaining young man when he was having a good day. Like I said, things didn’t always go to plan and he would display behaviours that challenged but this was part of the progression for him. 

David turned 18 in 2020 and moved into an adult living provision which would help to further his progression. He will be missed by a lot of staff as well as myself. David made some terrific memories not only for himself but the staff that worked with him.  Especially those who took him out on activities, on holidays or those who cared for him in the house, he was something special. 

I always said when I first came into the care sector, if I can help just one person then my job is done. The only problem is you never stop at just one, its infectious to continue helping the young people that come into our homes. 

I have always said that for me, working with children and young people in residential care is not a job it’s a vocation. 

Inspired by Deana’s experiences? Why not apply for a role at Progress today!

Progress recognised with award for Covid work

Progress was named winner of Outstanding Support During Covid-19 category at the 2020 Best Business Awards.

We have been recognised for our approach to the nationwide lockdown caused by Covid-19 in March 2020.

As lockdown came into force, Progress prioritised the care of those that relied on us for critical support. We assigned drivers, offering a ring-and-ride service to our workforce to eliminate the use of public transport and minimise the exposure risks. Progress also offered a triage service to families, to deal with any crisis that might arise and made available some flats as isolation units (and offered that resource to local authority partners).

Progress has been able to keep all residents and staff safe; continue to provide essential services to families and challenge our creativity. Our community team started digital support sessions with young people, engaging in online training on anything from e-safety to managing anxiety, providing families with support and young people with consistency. Progress staff and young people have engaged with the measures we put in place and coped exceptionally well through what has been an uncertain and anxious time, adapting and responding to the constantly shifting sands.

The BBAs pride themselves on having a large panel of independent expert judges who select winners according to strict criteria for each category and sector.

Commenting on Progress, the winner in the Outstanding Support During Covid-19 category, the chairman of the judges said: “After seeing the devastation Coronavirus was causing in Italy earlier in 2020, Progress was quick to lock down earlier than other care homes to protect its vulnerable residents both young and old. Non-essential visitors were asked not to attend care homes, virtual forms of communication were set up so residents could keep in touch with loved ones, and community staff were reassigned to other roles such as drivers, helping staff to avoid public transport. Congratulations to Progress Care for having the foresight to act quickly and keep people safe.”

Upon receiving the Award, Claire Rogers, Managing Director of Progress said:

“We always pride ourselves on providing high quality care and support, but this has been even more important throughout the Pandemic, with the additional challenges this presented. Keeping our core values at the heart of our decision making has been our strength, providing a fixed point from which to navigate. It is wonderful to have been recognised for the outstanding support we have provided during this difficult time.”

The Best Business Awards are one of the UK’s highest profile awards. Due to its high profile, the Awards attract a wide range of entries from across all sectors from large international PLCs and public sector organisations to dynamic and innovative SMEs.