Proud to Care - October Newsletter

Proud to Care Devon

October Newsletter                                  Issue number 11




As well as our inspirational team of Ambassadors promoting careers in care and health, we currently have a recruitment campaign that is running to attract people to the sector. This campaign is focusing on recruiting people aged 40 – 65 to domiciliary care across the county. We are very proud that our 100th Ambassador, John, is one of the campaign stars along with Jean and Ali. We are advertising online on Facebook and Google, in the local press, on Heart FM and Radio Exe, in the Big Issue, Exeter living and Devon Life, as well as at the Northcott Theatre, Exeter Chiefs and in Exeter City Football programme. Please show your support by tweeting any photos of our adverts if you see them when you are out and about, using #ProudtoCare.

Ambassador story - Judi Armstrong, Livewell Southwest

Judi Armstrong

I am an Occupational Therapist and have been working in patient care for over twenty years. I have worked in the community, acute hospital, rehabilitation and urgent care services and I love my work!

However I wasn’t always as focused.

As a teenager I was a rather rebellious character! As a Headmasters daughter I was keen to buck the trend and didn’t care much about my studies. When I left school I had different uninteresting jobs, travelled abroad and worked, got married and started a family. But, deep down I knew I was unfulfilled in my life and kept being drawn to health and caring for people.

When my eldest daughter was two I started my own business providing musical movement & activities to Nursing Home residents locally, as I loved spending time with the older generation and wanted them to have a more fulfilling day. One day a family visitor advised me that she was so happy that the Nursing Home had an “O.T.” and that her Father delighted in the weekly sessions of exercise and art/crafts and thanked me for what I did. Then a nurse told me it was great having an “O.T.“ on the team. I couldn’t believe that they meant me!

So, I went and found out what an “O.T.” was, and decided that this fabulous career was for me, but I found out that I would have to return to study and this meant doing an “Access Course” for a year at the local college and three years at University. As a single parent to a young child I was overwhelmed by the cost and time it would take, but I was passionate about what could be in store or me as a health professional and dedicated myself to some challenging, but awe-inspiring times. The time flew by. I’m a great believer of “You get out of life what you put in” and “Anything is possible!”

I have gone from a return to study mature student to now being Therapy Lead at Mount Gould Community Hospital, overseeing a team of occupational therapists and physiotherapists and the provision of quality services for in-patient rehabilitation. Not bad for someone that was a bit of a terror at school!

My passion is teaching and training, and I am honoured to be a part of the “Proud to Care” initiative and project. I delight in making others aware of the amount of different and fulfilling jobs within health services, and of what they can and are able to achieve at any age! It also helps greatly to have the opportunity to know what’s out there and to speak to people that have been there and done it and can support you, which is why my dedication to “Proud to Care” is so important to me.

Proud to Care Ambassador Event

Ambassadors certificates

We had another inspiring Proud to Care Ambassador induction event in Exeter at the end of September.  Councillor Andrew Leadbetter presented our new Ambassadors with their certificates and we heard some inspiring people talk.  The biggest hit of the day was Orsa, a therapy dog, and her inspirational owner Sonya.

Our next event is planned for Wednesday 30 January in Exeter for new and exiting Ambassadors, more details to follow soon.

Upcoming Events - Please email Tracy to volunteer

7 Nov          Petroc Tiverton Campus             5 pm - 8 pm            Careers evening

8 Nov          Petroc North Devon Campus      5 pm - 8 pm            Careers evening

15 Nov        Exeter School                             6 pm - 8 pm            Careers convention

21 Nov        Ivybridge Community College     5.30 pm - 7.30 pm  Careers fair

22 Nov        Great Torrington School             6 pm - 8.30 pm        Careers evening

29 Nov        Sidmouth College                       8.45 am - 1.30 pm   Careers roundabout 

For more information or to volunteer please email Tracy at        


As always, your feedback is important to us. Please follow the relevant links to a short two minute survey if you attended any of these events:


Ambassador resources are available from:

  • Your local Proud to Care Champion. Find your local Champion here.
  • Health Education England have 16 A4 books covering individual health career areas and an A5 overview booklet.  Order on 0345 6060 655 or Allow two weeks for delivery.
  • Skills for Care have a range of care careers and apprenticeship information and booklets. Contact your local Champion.
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