Tim Cocking recently spoke at the Rotary Club of Dunblane and Bridge of Allan. Below is the write up which made it into the Stirling Observer.
Care of the elderly may seem an unusual profession for a young man. But, in an illuminating talk to the Bridge of Allan and Dunblane Rotary Club on Thursday, Tim Cocking traced how his career path had led him to setting up Brightcare, a company providing this specialist care.
Having worked on a building site for two years after leaving school, Tim followed this with a short period in University, which he didn’t find satisfying. This led to him working in a letting agency in Edinburgh, which encouraged Tim to look for a business opportunity that would be fulfilling. In 2006, an opportunity arose to work in a care home in Dunbar, and the die was cast. He found the work very satisfying, and he also saw a business opportunity – the challenge to provide a service to elderly people who wish to stay in their homes, but who need a range of support to allow them to do so. Aged 24, and with the help of his wife, he set up Brightcare to provide this support, initially in Edinburgh. The rest, as they say, is history: seven years later the company has five offices, the latest in Bridge of Allan, now employing 180 support staff. Some 350 families are benefiting from the care thus provided.
Brightcare is a private company, independent from state provision, offering in-house care and companionship for which those receiving the service make payment. Tim outlined the levels of cost of this service which, in many instances, can be provided at a level competitive with the cost of a care home, but with the great benefit of allowing the elderly person to remain at home in familiar surroundings. The support provided is scaled to meet individual needs, including, increasingly, the on-set of dementia.
Tim stressed that Brightcare has a focus on doing things well. His goal has been to establish a positive culture in the business with an emphasis on ensuring that the care provided is of the highest standard. This relies on the recruitment of staff motivated to give the desired level of support in a caring relationship. The duties undertaken by staff are not task driven; they are in response to individual needs. To ensure its continuing effectiveness, the company has to be agile, able to respond effectively to changing demands. To achieve this, staff receive on-going training in the company’s own training facility.
Inevitably, there are challenges, with increasing regulation of provision, and a demand that exceeds supply. But there are compensations: it is very satisfying when the care provided is able to allow an elderly person to stay at home, and when the benefits of this are obviously appreciated.
Following questions, Peter Holmes, Speaker’s Host, reflected on the challenges faced by Tim in building a successful business and ensuring that its standards are maintained. He congratulated Tim on his achievements and thanked him for an excellent presentation, a sentiment echoed by members.
There will be a meeting on 13 April in the Westlands Hotel, Doune Road, at 6.00 for 6-30pm. The speakers will be Pierre Leger and Andrew Watson from Strathearn Cheese. Visitors are always very welcome to meetings. Anyone interested in attending should contact the Club Secretary, Iain Fraser at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tel: 01786 822751. More information can be found on the Club website: www.dunblanerotary.org.uk or the Facebook site: www.facebook.com/dunblanerotary.