As the final set of stories from Brunelcare’s, Part of Something More Campaign, the charity is exploring its incredible unsung heroes. Brunelcare are taking a look into the not so rudimentary roles at the helm, by catching up with Saffron Gardens’ Deputy Chef, Housekeeping Supervisor and Receptionist to explore how they go above and beyond their job descriptions, and, It’s really spectacular!
Maxine Forbes, 65, has been Deputy Chef at Brunelcare’s Saffron Gardens Care Home for 13-years. She works 6am – 4pm, Monday – Friday, and cooks 434* meals PER DAY for the residents living at the home. This makes a total of 2,170 meals a week, 8,680 meals per month and 104,160 meals per year. But, that’s not all that Maxine does.
Maxine goes above and beyond her typical job description at Brunelcare by doing something spectacular, something that she believes: ‘Is what anyone else would do’. Maxine will hand lovingly make ‘nostalgic’ meals that allow the residents living with dementia to reconnect with happy memories. She does this by making food, desserts or drinks that the residents would have an emotional connection with, and would have enjoyed as children, or shared with family. Meals such as Sunday roasts, spotted dick puddings and even prawn cocktail are made weekly, specifically to spark parts of the brain that hold dear memories, and put a smile on the residents faces who are living with dementia. Maxine knows that taste and smell can trigger happy memories, so she researches meals everyday to add to the Saffron Gardens menu.
Maxine even managed to make it into the kitchen when Bristol was suffering with torrential snow at the beginning of 2019, only two out of her eight chefs could make it into work, so Maxine pulled a double shift and spent 16-hours in the kitchen to ensure all the residents were served their delicious hot three meals, plus desert that day. She even travelled around Bristol afterwards in her car dropping employees homes.
Finally, Maxine has a house rule within Saffron Gardens, she must always make a huge birthday cake for the residents when it’s their special day.
Maxine said: “I love working in the kitchen at Brunelcare, I have such a great team around me and I really don’t know what I would do without them! I enjoy planning the meals around the residents and I’m always more than happy to help as I’m passionate about my job. I get to cook delicious meals and help serve them to all our wonderful residents. I leave everyday knowing I have made a difference, and can’t wait to get in the kitchen to see my family the next day – it’s fantastic being part of something more.”