A Wrexham based health visitor who goes above and beyond the call of duty to support asylum seekers and Syrian refugees has won a top award.
Jackie Williams was named the winner of the Advancing Equality Award at a glittering gala evening at Venue Cymru to mark the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board Achievement Award 2019.
The awards, sponsored by Centerprise International, celebrate the outstanding achievements of NHS staff from across North Wales.
Jackie has been recognised for what colleagues describe as an ‘inspirational’ commitment to providing health and wellbeing support to asylum seekers and refugees from Syria and other war torn countries.
BCUHB’s Advancing Equality Award, sponsored by Axia ASD, celebrates a team or individual who have demonstrated a strong commitment to advancing equality, diversity and human rights at work.
Since 2001 Jackie has supported the resettlement of hundreds of asylum seekers, trafficked women and refugees in the Wrexham area.
Wrexham is one of four dispersal areas in Wales and the only area in North Wales which receives asylum seekers from the Initial Assessment Unit based in Cardiff.
On arrival in Wrexham, Jackie coordinates their health and wellbeing assessments and provides ongoing support to ensure that asylum seekers can access a range of health services.
She also runs drop in sessions which bring a range of support services together under one roof.
Nominating Jackie for the award, Karen Owen, BCUHB’s Engagement Officer for North East Wales, said:
“Jackie has been an inspiration to all her colleagues and her dedication over the years to providing instant support to asylum seekers and Syrian refugees is second to none.
“She really goes out of her way to support individuals, and is an exceptional example of how to 'Advance Equality'.
“The impact on her work around patient care has been phenomenal - she supports so many individuals and goes way beyond her role to provide care and support. She usually has a queue of individuals waiting to see her at drop in sessions and she is the answer to all their prayers.
“I have seen so many individuals personally thank her for supporting them with very difficult situations.”
Jackie said: “I’m shocked and delighted to win this award, but for me the greatest satisfaction comes from helping other people and knowing that I’ve made a difference.”
Sue Power, from award sponsor Axia ASD, said: “Jackie’s efforts to support the health and wellbeing of some of the most vulnerable people in our communities is remarkable and inspirational. We were delighted to support this award and she is a very worthy winner.”
Jeremy Nash, Chief Executive of Centerprise International, said: “It was a privilege to be the headline sponsor at the Health Board’s Achievement Awards for the third year running. The Awards served as an excellent opportunity to recognise all of the amazing people working within the NHS across North Wales.
“Centerprise is committed to supporting the Welsh community and NHS in equal measure. We were delighted to be represented at the Awards, which was a wonderful celebration of the incredible efforts of the Health Board and its committed staff.”