When providing excellent person-centred care, it is important to work together – collaborating with team members in each role to ensure each and every aspect of daily life helps to benefit the people who live in the care home. From the friendly faces that welcome people into reception, to the domestic teams who keep the home clean and presentable, all the way through to the catering teams, who serve delicious and nutrient dense foods to improve lifestyle and wellbeing.

Learning from people who are great at what they do is key when it comes to team development and so collaborating with people who excel in their fields outside of a care home can provide a new perspective and help to develop a person’s existing skills.

Excelcare’s Head of Hospitality, Andrew Seal collaborates with many different suppliers and individuals to ensure that each and every aspect of a person’s lifestyle is contributing to a wholesome and enriched life.

A key part of this is all about the food we eat, what each meal contains, and how it appears on a

plate. These important details can sometimes be overlooked, but it’s no different than going into a restaurant and seeing a plate of food that look’s un-appealing – after all, we taste with our eyes before we do with our mouths.

Some of the people who live in our care homes need to have the texture of their food changed to make it safe for them to eat; it’s important people who are receiving foods with a modified texture experience delicious tasting meals that look appetising too.

To help educate and enhance the skills of people working in catering teams across the Excelcare Family, Andrew recently arranged for a group of team members from across the family to attend a skills development session at the prestigious Kingsway College in Westminster, lead by Jamie Clews, Key Account Manager at Robot Coupe.

With a range of blenders that help care home teams to achieve the correct consistency of foods for people on a texture modified diet, it was the perfect setting to challenge team members to hone their existing skills to make a beautifully presented full English breakfast, for someone who receives level-4 pureed foods.

With support from Jamie, members of Excelcare’s catering teams were offered guidance in choosing the correct setting on the blenders and shown how to achieve the best results. The lesson then moved on to show the team how to present the meal in a way that looked similar to a traditional English Breakfast plate.

“The session was incredibly beneficial for everyone involved. Taking people out of their usual cooking environments, into a setting where many celebrated chefs have trained helped to get team members excited about the challenge and really engage themselves in the food they were serving. The change of environment and meeting with colleagues from across the group gave people the chance to collaborate, share ideas and support their colleagues to achieve the very best results,” said Head of Hospitality, Andrew Seal.

Care home kitchens can be very fast-paced, with many different meals to prepare for people receiving foods of varying dietary requirements, tastes and textures, so finding time to practice skills can be challenging. However, taking the teams off-site for the day to develop their skills and learn new ones in the process helps to ensure each and every person is focused on the task in hand.

This was proved during the workshop, as each and every person produced a plate of food that was both appealing and delicious. Putting their refined skills into practice inside their care homes is the next step and we can’t wait to see the response it generates from the people who live in our homes.