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Local charity Treetops Hospice Care is celebrating after being ranked 4th in the Sunday Times 100 Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For and awarded three-star accreditation for extraordinary levels of staff engagement.

Every year, the national newspaper assesses the quality and popularity of workplaces in the UK. The ‘Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For’ celebrates the cream of Britain’s employers across public-sector bodies, charities and housing associations.

Treetops, which has 139 employees, has been providing nursing care and emotional support for adults and their families across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire for over 30 years. Last year the hospice supported over 1,750 people through its services which include Support and Information, a Day Care unit based in Risley, Hospice at Home nurses and Therapeutic Services including counselling and complementary therapy.

George Cameron

George Cameron

“It’s a great place to work”

Treetops chief executive George Cameron said:

“I am truly delighted that Treetops Hospice Care has achieved such an accolade.

“Though this is really gratifying, it is in some way not surprising, as we have a team of employees whose focus is completely centred on delivering exemplary care to those who use our services. This is manifested in their attitude to their roles and especially to each other.

“Treetops takes great pride in recruiting staff who reflect our values and this has led to a culture of companionship and belonging. Everyone is willing to help each other, as we all have our service users at the heart of what we do.

“We take great pride in how we treat our staff and always value their opinion – it’s a great place to work.”

Over 80% of Treetops employees completed the survey leading to the three-star accreditation. 96% of staff said they were positive about the hospice, were proud to work there and believed they made a difference.

Good team spirit

84% of staff experience good team spirit, have fun and feel a sense of belonging to the charity.

Nicola Ward and friends

Nicola Ward (centre) with friends at a fundraising event for Treetops in 2016

Employees from across the whole charity were invited to complete the survey including Nicola Ward, a Hospice at Home nurse who joined Treetops just over a year ago:

The thing about Treetops is that everybody is here because they really care about what they do and I think that sets it apart from everywhere else I’ve worked. Everybody really cares – not just about the people that we’re looking after but we really do seem to care about each other.

“For me, the best thing about working here is going back to basic nursing. I can give that thorough, holistic nursing care and it rekindles my desire and passion to continue to nurse.

“I feel supported, trusted and respected and very honoured and proud to work for Treetops.”

Shaun Byrne

Shaun Byrne checking the minibus is ready to roll

“Fantastically rewarding”

Shaun Byrne, Treetops caretaker and minibus driver added:

“I’ve worked all over the country for all sorts of different companies and there’s not a management structure or a team that I’ve ever come across that comes close to the people we’ve got here.

“In my opinion they treat you as a person. They don’t treat you as a number which a lot of companies do.

“All the managers, any one of them, you can go and talk to them at any time – they’re very, very approachable and very open to new ideas.

“It’s fantastically rewarding – I’ve come here and not stopped smiling since.

Carol Stevenson

Carol Stevenson

Carol Stevenson, senior counsellor, joined Treetops as the very first student placement in 2003. She started volunteering for the charity after qualifying and was then offered a job:

“I can’t see myself moving anywhere else – I wouldn’t want to. Treetops has visions and they are always looking for what else we can be doing and how we can be out there for the community. It’s listening – to the needs of the community as well as the needs of its employees.”

Prestigious award ceremony

The results were revealed at a prestigious award ceremony on Wednesday 22 February in Battersea Park, London attended by chief executive George Cameron, director of clinical services Phil Shreeve and Treetops chair of trustees Julie Heath.

In 2016, Treetops was rated as top performing charity by Birdsong Charity Consulting, which surveys around 60 charities every year across the UK.

Each year, hundreds of organisations from a wide range of industries use the Sunday Times employee survey to measure the engagement of their employees. The responses are collated and combined to produce an overall engagement score for each organisation. Only the organisations with the highest level of overall employee engagement qualify.