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Unsung Hero Awards 2024 – meet your nominees from OUH


We are delighted to announce that three members of our staff and three of our teams have been shortlisted in the prestigious Unsung Hero Awards, the national awards for non-medical / non-clinical NHS staff and volunteers who go above and beyond the call of duty.

OUH is also in the running for the Special Recognition Award – the new national Unsung Hero Award for Trust-wide quality and outstanding achievement.

The inaugural Special Recognition Award is to recognise NHS trusts for their outstanding support for the non-medical, non-clinical staff across their own organisations, and significant contribution to the celebration of all unsung heroes.

Members of staff nominated for an award

Rachel Collins, Trust Security Manager – Estates and Ancillary category.

Tenisha Joseph, Respiratory Medicine Administration Manager – Admin and Clerical category.

Remi Kahari, one of our porters – Estates and Ancillary category.

Our teams nominated for an award

NHS Power Choir Volunteer of the Year category.

Travel and Transport team –Estates and Ancillary category.

Neurosciences Admin Staff  – Admin and Clerical Category.

Congratulations and good luck to all of our staff shortlisted for the awards. Thank you for all that you do as part of our OneTeamOneOUH.

Excerpts from the nominations

Rachel Collins

"Throughout 27 years of service to the NHS, Rachel embodies the unsung hero in all her professional life, a view unanimously shared by colleagues across all service streams. In her role as Security Manager, Rachel applies the same high standard of professionalism to each task –  be it an incident or strategic direction.

"She demonstrates a high level of interpersonal skills and treats everyone with respect and courtesy. Often she has to discuss painful or difficult events with patients and staff but she does so with dignity, calmness, fairness and consistency.

"Rachel has been pivotal in much of the work done in tackling violence and aggression and often reaches out to the team, offering her support before it is asked for. Her knowledge and experience are exceptional, and she is a joy to work alongside."

Tenisha Joseph

"Tenisha has revolutionised the thoracic department since joining in 2017, from going digital and helping set up a long-term follow-up programme to creating an environment in which professionalism, respect, affection, and laughter coexist and bring the multidisciplinary team together.

"Tenisha genuinely cares about patients, and this transpires in her work, the priorities she sets for the team and her interactions with patients who are always grateful for everything she does and happy to know they will find her on the other side of the phone."

Remi Kahari

"Remi is such a pleasure to work and always has a kind and approachable manner. He never complains about his workload and always has a smile and an infectious laugh. I have seen him work with patients that are at their most vulnerable, and he is always able to get them talking and smiling.

"Whenever I catch him in the corridor with a patient, he is always talking to them, learning about their lives and making them feel important. He is a credit to the hospital and genuinely makes me smile when he is the porter that has been sent to a job of mine. He has an attitude towards work and life that I could only wish to emulate one day."

NHS Power Choir

Also known as Horton Power Choir, NHS Power Choir is led by Jason Rigby (Facilities Manager, Estates).

"Jason joined the NHS in December 2022 and soon wanted to do something extra to promote the Trust Values and promote wellbeing and joy amongst his hard-working NHS colleagues. In February 2023 the NHS Power Choir was born, and now the choir has grown to over 40 members.

"Jason works tirelessly for this group each week devising tracks, creating parts, advertising the choir, and creating learning methods. He deals with any press and organises events for us to sing at. His energy at rehearsals helps us non-singers relax, and he is always looking for ways for us to project and promote our sound.

"And then there are the events – Jason got us to sing at the NHS Staff Awards in July 2023 and then his belief saw that and raised that in December where the choir was booked to sing at the Horton Children’s Ward, The Buckingham Winter Fair, The Katharine House Lights of Love event (for the patients and carers), and finally he has single-handedly organised a Christmas concert."

Travel and Transport team

"Our travel and transport team is, I believe, the most unsung group of heroes in the Trust.

"We have 14,000 staff across the four hospitals, 1.5 million patient contacts a year, and almost every one of them will encounter the travel and transport team in some way or another. What would the point be of the four hospitals if our patients could not get to their appointments or if our staff could not get to work to care for them?

"This team works so well together to do what they can to improve facilities and provide exemplary customer service under some very difficult circumstances. They thoroughly deserve to be recognised for their contribution to the Trust. The entire team always has the patients and staffs' needs at the heart of every decision.

"The OUH travel and transport team is few in number but huge in impact."

Neurosciences Administration Staff

"As the Clinical Lead for Neurosurgery for the Southeast Region of England, I oversee clinical and non-clinical operations across three sites: Oxford, Southampton, and Brighton. This year it was a tough one particularly for Oxford Neurosciences Division, not only due to the winter and pandemic pressures, but also for the sad loss of one of their team members who had been a pillar for the neurosurgical, neurological, and spinal departments for so many years.

"The Neurosciences Admin Staff at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust deserve praise for a number of reasons: not only they managed to overcome personal struggles and to leverage on their inner positive energy to move forward, but they also created and nurtured a flourishing working environment, where the collaborative spirit to pursue a common goal led them to achieve excellent operational performances."

Winners will be announced at the National 2024 Unsung Hero Awards ceremony on 15 March 2024 at the Hilton, Manchester.