News and press releases
Our Engine Room
You’d be forgiven for thinking that you’ll find the latest heavy metal tunes on Hard FM or some silky romantic ballads on Soft FM, but you won’t. These are the terms used for facilities management, hard being the fabric of the building, ensuring the safety and welfare of employees, for example heating, lighting and electrics. Soft FM are the services that buildings and companies rely on to maintain a healthy and safe environment comprising domestic assistants, porters and gardeners.
In short, our 44 strong Facilities Team, is the engine room of St Joseph’s. Every one of them is crucial to the day to day operation of the Hospice.
Led by Head of Department Alvin Anderson and supported by Maintenance Supervisor Paul Freeman, the team carry out all repairs, electrical issues, painting, plumbing, cleaning and gardening, if something goes wrong we contact the Facilities Team.
It goes without saying that our domestic team keep the Hospice clean and tidy and many of them have worked at St Joseph’s Hospice for many, many years. But there is much more to their role. On the wards they don’t just make tea and toast for the patients, or serve lunches, they stop for a chat and are as integral to the positive patient experience as the wonderful nursing care. One of our domestic assistants is also a very accomplished seamstress who alters uniforms for the staff and will sometimes do running repairs for the patients.
We have two laundry assistants who wash and iron all of the bedding and towels, often with the help of the porters. It’s really important that the beds are always fresh and clean, the patients comfort is our priority in everything we do.
Our six porters unload supplies from lorries, take meals to the wards, take patients to appointments within the Hospice and transport furniture and parcels around the building. Between them they have xx years service which is incredible!
Our two part time gardeners, do a fantastic job with the help of a couple of volunteers. They tend to the gardens which look beautiful all year round, clean out the ponds, keep the grass cut and grow plants in their small greenhouse to sell and raise money for the Hospice.
The Hard FM Team are there to help plan big projects, like the refurbishment of Lourdes Ward and to deal with the smaller things that can go wrong from time to time, this is an old building after all. We have patients, over 300 staff and many volunteers to look after so we can’t have the heating packing up in the winter, or the air conditioning breaking down in the summer so we have a plumber, electrician and a carpenter on site. They’re always kept busy. Our painter and decorator is on hand to apply a coat of paint to brighten up a room or touch up damage to wall.
What happens at night?
St Joseph’s Hospice is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so we have two, night security staff, keeping our patients, visitors and staff safe throughout the night. They will deal with most issues themselves but if extra help is needed one of our Hard FM team are always on call if needed.
So, here’s to our unsung heroes, our Facilities Team, who work behind the scenes to keep St Joseph’s Hospice clean and running like clockwork.