Adaptable, consistent, and awesome. Those are the words used to describe Ella, November’s employee of the month.
Ella was nominated for working across multiple programs with different clients her availability for shifts, and how she gets along great with clients and teammates.
This is Ella’s first time working in disability support. Her caring nature and passion for connecting with people is what drew her to the disability sector.
Ella is in her final year of a Bachelor of Nursing and said her studies have greatly helped her disability support work.
“Studying nursing has helped me understand clients better, so I know the right way to deal with issues if they arise,” she said.
“Also, working in disability support has helped me with my studies. It’s made me look at activities of daily living more when I make care plans, and I get more chances to practice client-centred care.”
Ella recalled a time where she put her studies into practice. She and John (client’s name changed to protect identity) were waiting in line at a busy pathology clinic, when John’s behaviour escalated.
“We had been in the queue for over twenty minutes,” she said. “This was when John stood up and demanded to go to the front of the line.”
“I gently reminded him that we had to wait our turn, which would be soon. John got upset and raised his voice to me.”
So, Ella validated John’s feelings and de-escalated his behaviour. She agreed that the situation was frustrating, but they had to be fair to the other people in line.
“After the appointment, I thanked John for his patience. That experience was good for both of us and built up our relationship – as I supported him to regulate his emotions.”
Debriefing after a tough shift is important to Ella. For her, debriefing means talking with her family, who she describes as being her “biggest support system”.
When she’s not at work, Ella can usually be found cooking up a storm in the kitchen, or out in the garden.