East Coast Community Healthcare highly commended for two prestigious awards

ECCH staff directors Simon Drewett (centre) and Ali Jennings (centre right) with finance director Si

ECCH staff directors Simon Drewett (centre) and Ali Jennings (centre right) with finance director Simon Bragg, director of health improvement and children’s services Julia Whiting and head of social enterprise development Peter Gosling. Picture: EOA Conference 2017 photographer Luke Dixon. - Credit: Archant

A social enterprise which provides community health services in Norfolk and Waveney has been highly commended for two prestigious awards.

The work of East Coast Community Healthcare (ECCH) was recognised in two categories at the UK Employee Ownership Association (EOA) awards.

ECCH was runner up in the Positive Impact of the Year category, and its two staff directors - Ali Jennings and Simon Drewett - were highly commended as Employee Owners of the Year.

The awards, run by the EOA and sponsored by Baxendale, celebrate the significant contribution employee owned businesses make to the UK economy.

The judges of the Positive Impact of the Year Award said they were impressed with the energy and commitment behind ECCH, particularly as one of the first health organisations in the area to introduce out of hospital teams so patients can be treated in their own homes wherever possible, and for training 300 of its staff in health coaching techniques over the past two years.

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ECCH was also praised for using its surplus resources to support the community including providing free infant resuscitation classes for parents and helping unemployed young people into work in partnership with The Prince's Trust.

The Employee Owner of the Year award celebrates champions of employee ownership. The judges said they were impressed with the directors' accomplishments as employee representatives including establishing a Shareholder Council and helping to raise the number of shareholders within the organisation from 55pc to 80pc.

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Jonathan Williams, chief executive of Lowestoft-based ECCH, said: 'We work very hard to give all our staff a say in the running of the organisation and it's great that our success in this area has been recognised. I am also very proud of Ali and Simon. As staff directors, appointed by their colleagues, they have been inspirational, enthusiastic and hugely supportive of all members of staff. As they come to the end of their three year term of office, we can look back on the impact they have made and appreciate the seismic shift in staff engagement that has occurred during their tenure.'

Deb Oxley, chief executive of EOA, said: 'These awards recognise the productivity, innovation and excellence driven by teams and individuals in employee owned businesses. They demonstrate how employees having a stake in their organisation, teamed with a robust culture of transparency and employee engagement, results in outstanding performance in growth and resilience.'

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