Celebrating Inspirational Leadership: Charlotte Driver-Young, Winner of the Suffolk Care Awards

Celebrating Inspirational Leadership: Charlotte Driver-Young, Winner of the Suffolk Care Awards

Last year’s Suffolk Care Awards ceremony was a night to remember, as it celebrated the unsung heroes of the care industry, those who go above and beyond to make a positive impact in the lives of vulnerable individuals. Among the remarkable individuals recognised that evening, Charlotte Driver-Young stood out as a shining example of inspirational leadership, deserving the prestigious award for her exceptional contributions to the care sector.

As we look ahead to this year’s awards, what can we learn from Charlotte? And what has the award win meant for her?

The Journey of an Inspirational Leader to 2023 Ambassador of the Year Award Sponsor

As the winner of the coveted Inspirational Leadership award, Charlotte Driver-Young’s journey has been nothing short of remarkable. With a history in policing for 16 years, Charlotte saw opportunity in the care sector to enhance her career progression, and she had reached a ceiling limit at the police. 

She had a u turn which capitalised on her safeguarding background which she then applied to the care sector. However, the leadership and management skills in the police were incredibly transferable and led to her, just over two years later, winning the coveted award. 

“I’ve been really lucky to have been parachuted really quickly, promoted to Director of a large, national live-in company, Christies, and most importantly, I love it. There is so much opportunity, but the commitment to care is just amazing. I feel very privileged to be in the care sector, and the people are so great.” 

Despite her win, she is truly humbled by everything she sees the carers do for people.  “We are proud to be involved, and to sponsor the Ambassador of the Year award, which is so important. Ambassadors are crucial as the care sector is so underrated. The work that is done is not recognised, but to give people the opportunity to aspire to also be an ambassador.  The sector isn’t recognised as a high enough skilled job or role, but it really is, and it is SO important. Carers are allowing people to be able to live independently, and it enriches peoples’ lives. It is giving quality of life to people and even I didn’t realise the breadth of skills that are required to be able to work in care. To have an ambassador who promotes the value and worth of care is incredibly important.” 

Why Charlotte Driver-Young Won

Charlotte Driver-Young, Operations Director and Registered Manager at Christies Care Ltd is the embodiment of an Inspirational Leader. Charlotte displayed exceptional leadership skills coming into the business from a non-care background during the first lockdown and faced the most challenging times that have affected the care industry: COVID, Brexit and now the cost-of-living crisis. Despite the many and varied challenges, Charlotte created a clear business plan and vision for staff, leading by example with tenacity and resilience, bringing teams together to achieve the required outcomes. 

Charlotte has achieved a great deal since joining Christies Care including setting up an hourly care branch, partnership and collaborative working with Suffolk Constabulary and establishing a coaching culture. She promotes working collaboratively with external stakeholders and has been building a support network around senior management teams.

Beyond the Award: Making a Real Difference

Charlotte Driver-Young’s impact extends far beyond the award she received. Her leadership has set a benchmark for others to follow, elevating the standard of care within the region. Her innovative ideas and dedication to staff development have resulted in a more skilled and motivated workforce, ultimately benefiting those they look after.

 “Leadership so crucial to what I do, but also to have something that is local and within the community, and I had only been in care two years last year, and having navigated through Brexit and Covid, which is already a tough sector, it was the recognition and validation from a local perspective meant a lot. 

From a career perspective it’s great to have that accolade, especially in leadership as a director of a large company, but also that it meaningful to the local community.”

“The incredible thing about working in care is that you can really see the difference that care makes to peoples’ lives. I have so much admiration for and so proud of what our carers do. We truly make a difference.”

The Significance of the Suffolk Care Awards

The Suffolk Care Awards hold immense importance in recognising and celebrating the outstanding contributions of care providers and professionals in the region. These awards are a testament to the hard work, dedication, and selflessness of individuals like Charlotte, who often work tirelessly behind the scenes to make a real difference in the lives of others.

Moreover, the awards serve as a platform to share best practices, ideas, and innovations within the care sector. They inspire a sense of camaraderie among care providers and encourage healthy competition, ultimately raising the bar for care standards across the region.

Charlotte said “I think it is so good to highlight the work that is being done within the sector and work being done within the community. To celebrate successes and recognise the breadth of the work that is delivered within care. It is also so important to come together and meet each other in a positive sense and celebrate care and everything we have achieved individually and collectively. The different types of workers that attend is also a testimony to the industry. From care in the community to live and pop in care, it’s great to come together and celebrate that.

The Suffolk Care Awards’ celebration of inspirational leadership, as exemplified by Charlotte Driver-Young, is a powerful testament to the profound impact of caring leadership in the lives of vulnerable individuals. These awards are not just about honouring individuals; they are about elevating the entire care sector, creating a ripple effect that positively impacts countless lives.

A note from this year’s Inspirational Leader Award, Ashton’s Legal

“At Ashtons Legal we like to support the communities in which our staff live, work and have their families.We work with people of all ages, many of our clients are elderly and we visit many care homes and see the wonderful work carers and staff do for their residents, so, by sponsoring the inspirational leader awards, we can give those people recognition for their hard work and determination.”

As we look forward to the next Suffolk Care Awards, let us continue to celebrate and support the exceptional leaders and care professionals who embody the spirit of compassion and dedication. Together, we can make a meaningful difference and continue to raise the bar for care excellence in Suffolk and beyond.

To find out more visit Care Development East

Photo Credit:  Christies Care / Charlotte Driver-Young

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