Optalis social worker WINS Lifetime Achievement Award

The ceremony took place at the Lancaster Hotel in London on 27 November.

The Lifetime Achievement Award celebrates the achievements and dedication of an outstanding individual who has worked in the social work profession for over 20 years.

Anju was not only recognised for excellence in her role as a highly respected social worker in the Brokerage and Professional Support Service at Optalis. “You can’t help but be moved by Anju’s entry” were the judges’ words when reading the nominations for the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Anju came to England in 1972 as a refugee from Uganda. After becoming a carer for her mother and sister, she trained as a nurse before qualifying as a social worker in 1992. Anju is also a keen volunteer and in 2007 she set up Vision Bharat UK, a charity which provides eye care to under privileged communities across India. Every year she uses her annual leave to visit India and assist in the charity’s eye camps.

Recently she spent three month’s volunteering for Help Age India in Mumbai, setting up free health camps and medical units to support older people, providing practical help to the local community and advising local groups and the police on recommended services and safeguarding protocol.

The judges said Anju’s Lifetime Achievement Award was in recognition of her vast experience and unwavering dedication, combining her social work and nursing skills to achieve consistently positive outcomes for service users, working tirelessly to help others in their lives.

Paying tribute to Anju’s achievement, Mette Le Jakobsen, Optalis Managing Director said, “We are all delighted that Anju’s amazing work both for Optalis and in her role as a volunteer has been recognised in this way.”

Chief Executive of Wokingham Borough Council Andy Couldrick commented, “It is great that Anju’s dedication, professionalism and commitment over many years has been properly recognised. Well done and congratulations.”

Picture shows: Anju Bhatti, collecting her Lifetime Achievement Award at the Social Worker of the Year Awards with Karen Goodman (from BASW - sponsor of the award)

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