A Team Leader has been shortlisted for two major awards!
Saj Daji, a team leader for three of our Yorkshire services, has been shortlisted for two awards at the Great British Care Award, in the Yorkshire region.
Saj, who has 20 years’ experience in social care, manages seven workers across three local Making Space services: Kirklees Floating Support, Kirklees Supported Housing and Leeds Supported Housing in Hunslet.
He has been shortlisted for the Housing With Care Award and the Social Care Covid Hero Award.
In May, Saj spoke to Prince William about his team's experiences in supporting vulnerable people during the COVID-19 pandemic. He was one of five support workers invited to join a Zoom call with the Duke.
HRH wanted to find out directly from those on the frontline whether their experience of working in social care had altered during the pandemic. Saj told the Duke that flexibility was key to keeping services running, whilst also protecting his team, one of whom is shielding.
Speaking to the Duke about his experience of looking after his workers throughout the crisis, he said: “It's very important for my staff that they don't feel isolated, so as a team we support each other, with Whatsapps and texts. We have lunch together on Skype and try to keep each other going.
"I tell them we have to protect ourselves and look after ourselves, because if we're not well, we can't look after someone else".
In addition to the regular help the three services offer, Saj's team has also been making referrals for food parcel drop-offs and teaching the people they support how to shop online and use technology to keep in touch with their loved ones.
His line manager, Steph Johansen, said: "Everyone, staff and tenants alike, adores Saj. He’s great at having a giggle – for instance we all call him Sir Saj since his call with the Prince – but his staff also know when it’s time to be serious and there’s work to be done.
“Saj is a practicing Muslim and you can see how his faith guides his work. His respect for everyone he comes into contact with is second-to-none.
“He never turns off; there is no out-of-hours for Saj. Supported housing is his vocation.”
We will find out if Saj has won at a gala awards evening at The Railway Museum in York on Thursday 15 April 2021.
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