DEDICATING more than 20 years to looking after children has earned Carolyn Ferbrache the title of Lloyds TSB Child Carer of the Year 2012.
Mrs Ferbrache was presented with her prize of £500 for herself and £500 for charity of her choice at a family meal and was unaware she had won until Lloyds TSB business development manager Craig Duquemin surprised her.
‘It was such a big surprise, I still don’t know how my husband kept it from me as I can usually tell when something is going on. I really can’t believe it and don’t think I deserve it, it’s just what I do,’ she said.
Mrs Ferbrache was nominated by family friend Richard Roberts who described her as ‘a most dedicated child carer’. She first started working with children 19 years ago when she worked at a playgroup and then became a childminder while raising her three children Corinne, 28, Hannah, 26 and Adam, 23. Mrs Ferbrache and her husband Ian also foster children including their foster daughter who has now been with them for 10 years.
‘Carolyn has always taken great effort to ensure that she has provided a caring and educational environment for children in her care. These children have, without a doubt, benefitted from such an environment and from the safe and hygienic conditions Carolyn has also provided,’ said Mr Roberts in his nomination.
Mrs Ferbrache said she was delighted to have been chosen as the winner and was looking forward to using her prize money.
‘I don’t know what I will spend my money on yet and I am going to look into which charity I want to choose as I want to give to a child-orientated one,’ she said.
Mr Duquemin, who was joined on the judging panel by Sarah Barsby from Guernsey Mums and Yvonne Blundell from the Guernsey Press, said the standard of entries was very high.
‘It’s always very humbling for us as judges to see just how many people in Guernsey give up hours and hours to help others and it’s a challenge each year to choose one winner,’ he said.
‘This year was no exception and every nominee would have been a deserving winner but we felt that Carolyn’s dedication to young people in the island, especially through fostering, had made a real difference.’
Mr Duquemin added that Lloyds TSB was planning to run the award again in 2013.