Lancaster caseworker Georgina goes the extra mile

Home Improvement Agency and handyperson client, Patricia Gerrard with city council caseworker, Georgina Smith.
Home Improvement Agency and handyperson client, Patricia Gerrard with city council caseworker, Georgina Smith.

A Home Improvement Agency (HIA) caseworker employed by Lancaster City Council has been recognised for going that extra mile in transforming people’s lives by being shortlisted for a national award.

Georgina Smith who has been working for the council for five years has been shortlisted in the Caseworker of the Year category of the 2019 Foundations National Healthy Housing Awards.

Foundations is an organisation appointed by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to oversee a national network of nearly 200 HIAs and handyperson providers across England.

The awards recognise the important work that is carried out every day by HIAs to support people across the country to live comfortably and independently in their own homes and celebrate the individuals who strive for excellence in their work.

Coun Caroline Jackson, cabinet member for housing, said: “As a valued member of a committed and dedicated team of caseworkers, Georgina is well known for being a tirelessly compassionate, caring and committed employee with an absolute determination to ensure every client receives the best possible outcome.

“It’s wonderful to hear that Georgina’s work is being recognised nationally for the positive impact she continues to have on ensuring some of our most vulnerable residents
 get access to the help they need to make those essential adaptations to their homes so they can continue living there safely and independently. Georgina regularly receives praise from clients and key partner organisations.”

Patricia Gerrard of Heysham recently benefitted from Georgina’s assistance in arranging for a wet room, rails and other minor adaptions to be installed in and around her home.

She said: “The adaptations that Georgina helped me arrange to have done in my home via the council’s Home Improvement Agency have transformed my life and as
an ongoing customer of the council’s handyperson scheme, I can always rely on Georgina to come to my aid when I need her support in filling in forms or contacting other agencies so that I can continue to enjoy living happily and comfortably in my own home.”

The winner of the award will be announced at a ceremony next month.