Lynn and Mike’s Home Instead Story

Lynn and Mike Roddy founded Home Instead Tavistock and Tamar Valley in 2018. I spoke to Lynn and Mike in early August, over 4 years since Home Instead first opened its doors,

Iknow you are a busy lady so let us get straight into it. You set up Home Instead in 2018, I’d like to ask what motivated you?

My decision to start Home Instead Tavistock and Tamar Valley was influenced by my own personal experiences of the care sector.

My involvement with care came about when my fiercely independent mum started to struggle with everyday tasks. Like many people, I didn’t know where to turn. I personally experienced how difficult it was to find quality, consistent care. As mum’s health declined and seeing me so worried, mum asked to go into a care home. However, mum would have dearly loved to stay at home… After a period of reflection after mum passed away, I came across Home Instead and was impressed to see the ways it is different from other traditional care companies.

You are a natural leader within the industry, can you tell us more about how Home Instead TTV has become so prominent in the local community?

We were overjoyed to be rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission; a rating achieved by only 3% of care providers. It would have been impossible to get to this point without our incredible team. We pride ourselves on our Care Professionals, their punctuality, consistency, and the exceptional quality of care they provide. They have been the bedrock of our success. We also have a highly energised team in the office who proved, especially over the pandemic, to be more flexible and resilient than a seasoned yoga instructor.

Mike, I’d love to bring you into the conversation. Can you tell me a bit about your personal experiences of choosing Home Instead for your mother’s care?

[Mike] My mum had been living at home with care provided from the local Home Instead office for several years. Mum’s a keen gardener, mean Scrabble player and loves walks along a nearby river. The team of Care Professionals are super stars, – their help allowed her to remain independent and safe. We adjusted her care plan to meet evolving needs. When my mum was in hospital with a UTI they visited throughout; their continued care, friendship and support mean so much – I cannot praise them highly enough.

At Home Instead we talk a lot about purpose and why we choose the caring profession. My personal experience has demonstrated to me that the care provided by Home Instead is second to none. The training our Care Professionals receive and the care they provide makes a huge difference to the families we help. It is quite literally life changing, extending the time that our clients can enjoy happy and fulfilled lives in their cherished homes. It brings joy to them and their loved ones. Home Instead Care Professionals allowed my mum to enjoy more things on her terms for longer. Time is precious and as a Care Professional, you help our clients make the most of it – that’s a rare gift.

How do you look after your clients and carers and allow interaction with families? 

The best way to look after our clients is through our Care Professionals that are second to none. Through recruiting well, maintaining high retention levels and providing excellent training, we know we have a team who are compassionate, experienced, and highly capable. Carers provide services such as home help, personal care, companionship and dementia care.

During the multiple lockdowns at the height of the pandemic, you made significant changes to the daily running of Home Instead. What were the key changes that allowed you to continue providing care in a safe way? 

Despite all the uncertainty, our core operation remained the same. You could be forgiven for thinking that nothing had changed, though inwardly, much had to be adapted. For example, our office became a PPE distribution hub and a HQ for Covid testing kits. But with less contact between teams and our rolling testing programme we ensured the safety of both our Care Professionals and clients, meaning our service was completely un-affected. It was a difficult time for many of our clients, so continuing our care became even more important as a social interaction and connection to the community. With many seniors being particularly vulnerable, that trust was placed in us to look after and keep them safe was a testament to our brilliant Care Professionals.