In 2022, the first year we entered the WAGS awards, we achieved one winner in the Rising Star category and one highly commended for the Women in Tech category. In 2023 one of our three entries received a highly commended.


Donna Barks, Tunbridge Wells Care Centre’s manager, won the WAGS’ Rising Star award. Having joined our Barty House Nursing Home as an agency nurse in 2020, she quickly rose to become deputy manager and, after the manager departed six months later, Donna saw the home through an outbreak of Covid! In early 2022 she became the manager at Tunbridge Wells.

“Having worked in the sector for many years, Donna Barks is highly qualified and experienced,” commented the judges. “Her expertise was especially put to use during the pandemic, where she passionately and effectively led the home through a very difficult time. Under Donna’s leadership, staff feel supported and her calm demeanour ensures the very best for colleagues and service users alike. She will continue to have a positive influence on those around her and the sector as a whole in years to come.”

Highly commended:

Liz Jones, Care Assistant at Ashridge Court Care Centre, received a ‘highly commended’ in the Rising Star category. Liz had worked in retail for over 20 years, rising to become manager of a flagship London branch of Sainsbury’s, before moving over to work in care. Her journey is fascinating, inspiring and emotional.

Impressed by Liz’s courage and tenacity, the judges said: “Two years ago, Liz joined Ashridge Court Care Centre after the tragic loss of her husband, marking her first venture into the care sector. Having left her previous role as a store manager at Sainsbury’s to care for her late husband, Liz has transitioned seamlessly into her new responsibilities. Currently pursuing her Level 3 qualification, Liz holds the crucial position of Safe People Handling at the home.”