Lyndsay Sard

Home manager at Larkrise Care Centre in Banbury

She said: “I never in a million years expected to be nominated, let alone be a finalist. I am passionate about health and social care and proud of the warm, safe and comforting home that Larkrise offers to our residents. From the bottom of my heart thank you for the nomination and thank you to my team for all of their hard work.”

She was nominated by her colleague Fiona Mayfield, who said: “Lyndsay is an out and out leader. She guided us through the hardest year of our lives and we have reached the other side as strong as ever.

“During the pandemic Lyndsay has not only been a huge help for the residents and the families but she has been a rock to all of the staff here. We have seen some really dark times at our home and she has always there to guide us all through. She has not only been a home manger but she has been cleaner and carer and admin and care leader she has been the back bone of all of us she has cried with us comforted and stood with us words can’t express how much she deserves this award.”

Courtney Hughes

Trainee nursing associate at Oxford University Hospitals and founder of Secret Santa 365

She said: “I feel really humbled to have been nominated and shortlisted for these awards. I am lucky to have worked in the NHS since I was 17, across many different areas. In addition to my previous role of a senior nursing assistant, I am now studying at Oxford Brookes University for my nursing associate degree while working full time at the John Radcliffe Hospital.”

She was nominated by Secret Santa 365 secretary Claire Hughes, who said: “Courtney has been a full-time NHS worker since the age of 17. She has worked in palliative care at SOBELL House. emergency medicine at the JR and more recently gynaecology at the women’s centre. In addition to her role she runs and maintains her charity secret Santa 365 independently. Her charity was founded in 2012 when she was 13 years old, predominantly to support vulnerable and sick members of the Oxfordshire community during various struggles and crises. Since then Courtney has gone on to support thousands of people plus scores of Oxfordshire based charities and all our hospitals and care homes. Over 80,000 gifts and essentials have been provided by Courtney across the county to those in need. However during the pandemic she stepped up. She supported fellow colleges and key workers each week across the Trust with care packages, food and weekly toiletries. She supported keyworker staff with essentials items including bedding and furniture for temporary accommodation. In Didcot alone she has been providing 200 elderly residents with food each week plus essentials. Knowing the struggles young people have with digital deprivation in Jan she launched Laptops for Learners she has provided over 200 children with a laptop to allow them to learn to their potential independently. She has fundamentally changed the lives for many for the better.

Tamara Davidson

Specialist palliative care nurse at Oxford University Hospitals

She said: “When I was informed of my nomination, I felt a huge sense of pride for my profession and team. It is an honour to know that I have had such a positive impact on my patients and their families at the end of their lives.”

She was nominated by Martin Eggleston, who said: “At the height of the pandemic, with every NHS sinew stretched and much fear in the corridors of the Churchill, this one person made the most enormous difference to my wife Kirsty. Her cancer was advancing fast. When Tamara spoke to Kirsty, she realised that my wife’s most important final wish was to die at home, surrounded by our children. Within a few hours, Tamara and the palliative team made all the arrangements, delivering a bed and all the necessary equipment to our house, sorting out paperwork and pain relief, making sure there was an ambulance standing by and inviting one of us to travel with her - if she were to die before she got home, she wouldn’t be alone.

“Well she got home, and our eldest son played his guitar to her; I kissed her and held her hand. Sitting by her side she slowly drifted away, feeling loved and cared for. I will forever be grateful to Tamara for making sure that my wife’s final hours were as gentle and painless as she could.”