Melanie Weatherley, CEO of Walnut Care, has been awarded an MBE in this year’s New Year’s Honours for her service to social care.
An advocate for high quality care and a strong believer in the value of the sector, Melanie has spent the last 15 years working to improve health and social care standards in Lincolnshire and beyond.
Melanie was honoured for her role in helping to set up the Care Home Trusted Assessor Scheme which helps older people move quickly out of hospital and appropriately into a care home. Piloted first in Lincolnshire, the scheme was so successful it was rolled out across the country.
Her role in setting up the Lincolnshire Care Awards which sees front line health and social care staff recognised and rewarded for their work also led to Melanie being recognised this New Year.
Melanie was an Accountant before she left her corporate role in 2002 to set up Walnut Care with husband David. She worked for Lord Chelsea and spent a year in Silicon Valley. The decision to leave her profession was a personal one. Although her father was well cared for towards the end of his life, her aunt was not so blessed. This experience inspired Melanie to build what is now one of the leading home care providers in Lincolnshire.
Walnut Care has a 200-strong team of care workers operating in towns and villages across Lincolnshire.
As well as running one of Lincolnshire’s biggest home care providers, Melanie is also a Fellow at NICE – the National Institute for Clinical Excellence. NICE fellows are experienced leaders from the field of health and social care who are ambassadors at regional and national levels.
In addition, Melanie has a leading role at Skills for Care and she is the Chair of the Lincolnshire Care Association and Co-Chair of the Care Association Alliance – a national body that encourages wider engagement between the UK’s wider health and care systems.
On hearing the news, Melanie said: “When I received the letter from the Cabinet Office, I was surprised. I didn’t expect it at all and to be honest it hasn’t sunk in yet. I am humbled but also honoured to receive an MBE for services to social care. It is an industry I love, and respect and I will continue to advocate strongly for the sector and be a voice for the hard-working staff and the millions of people receiving care every day.”
She continued: “I’d also like to thank the person – or people who nominated me. Personally, I feel that I’m just doing my job and what is best for the sector, but it means a lot to know that what you do doesn’t go unrecognised.”
The annual New Year’s Honours List celebrates British citizens who have served their country or made a significant contribution to their field, particularly those who have made life better for others. This year’s recipients were announced in the Crown’s official newspaper, The Gazette, on Friday 27th December 2019.