Receptionist Dona Smart couldn’t work out why colleagues were behaving secretively towards her when she turned up to work on Wednesday. She found out why after being “summoned” to the team meeting room to find colleagues and Trust Chair, Leisha Fullick, waiting to congratulate her after being named Trust Star of the Month!
Dona, who has worked as a receptionist at Highgate Mental Health Centre for the last 23 years, said: “I thought people were acting very strangely towards me today and now I know why! I’m very shocked, but this is a lovely surprise.”
Dona was nominated by Ruth Crowley, a Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist. She said in her citation: “As an ex-receptionist, I appreciate that a lot of work goes on behind the cheerful time and morning greeting. Dona always remains calm, regardless of what is happening in the building.
“She deals with Inpatient and Community Teams and manages room bookings, as well as general queries and patients who may arrive without any reason.”
Chair, Leisha Fullick, said: “Dona is welcoming to everyone she meets, and treats every person the same with her respectful and kind manner. This is supported by the great relationships she has clearly built with colleagues, security and general staff.
“Dona is very professional, ensuring she completes her job efficiently. She always goes the extra mile to support others, whether it is in person, on the phone or by email. Whatever your query, Dona is extremely helpful with her bright, sunny nature”.
She added: “The Star of the Month awards are our way of recognising the exceptional commitment of staff who go above and beyond on a daily basis. Dona is a hugely deserving recipient and, I think, the first receptionist to have won the award.”
Dona and colleagues marked the occasion with a celebratory tea of cakes and other treats. Dona was also presented with a Star of the Month certificate, badge and a £25 Marks and Spencer voucher.