Social Care News

As well as posting regular social care news updates on this page, we also provide an RSS feed for all news content posted on this website - click here to subscribe for free and keep up with everything that's going on.

View our news archive »

30th June 2010

Honour for Care Forum Wales Chief Executive

A pioneer of social care from North Wales has been honoured by the Queen.

Mario Kreft, the chief executive of the award-winning Pendine Park care organisation and the honorary chief executive of Care Forum Wales, has been awarded an MBE for services to social care.

According to Mr Kreft, the news came like “a delightful bolt out of the blue” especially as the timing of the accolade in the Queen’s Birthday Honours coincides with the 25th anniversary of Pendine Park.

The organisation employs 500 people in six care homes, in a domiciliary care company, Pendine Park Independent Living, and its in-house teaching care centre.

It is about to open a new centre of excellence, called Bodlondeb (place of contentment) to look after people with dementia at its main site in Wrexham.

There are plans in the pipeline for a similar centre in Caernarfon and between them the two centres are expected to create 200 new jobs.

Mr Kreft said: “I think the MBE is in recognition of the huge contribution made by social care in communities right across Wales, including the teams at Care Forum Wales and Pendine Park.

“We have a great team approach and this is a reward for all the work we’ve been doing together over the years to raise standards in social care and to promote the profession of social care.”

Mr Kreft and his wife, Gill, were inspired by their own personal experience to establish Pendine Park 1985.

They both had elderly grandparents who needed care and the places they went to see didn’t match their requirements - so they set up their own “family care home”.

Mr Kreft is now one of the leading figures in the care sector in Wales and is the founder and honorary chief executive of the private care sector body, Care Forum Wales.

For eight years, he was a Government-appointed member of the Care Council for Wales and previously served for seven years on the Central Council for Training and Education in social work.

Mr Kreft also played a key role in developing the Care Standards Act and in helping to draw up the Welsh Assembly Government’s 10-year care strategy, Fulfilled Lives, Supportive Communities, to safeguard vulnerable adults and children.

In addition, he was one of the main architects of a historic agreement between care providers and local authorities in Wales.

The aim of the Memorandum of Understanding, the first agreement of its kind in the UK, is to come up with a better way of planning and commissioning services while providing added protection for people being looked after in the social care sector.

Among Mr Kreft’s proudest achievements are the creation of the Wales Care Awards to recognise the contribution of staff and setting up a successful pilot project with the aim of developing a professional body for social care workers, the Academy of Care Practitioners Cymru.

It’s believed Pendine Park was one of the first independent care organisation in the UK to employ an artist in residence 14 years ago. A ground-breaking collaboration with the renowned Hallé orchestra led to an award from Arts and Business Cymru last year.

According to Mr Kreft, the values he learned from his grandparents are still his “guiding light”.

The new centre of excellence for people with dementia is dedicated to his grandmother who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease in later life and Bodlondeb is named after his grandparents’ home in St Asaph Street, Rhyl.

Mr Kreft said: “We started out by trying to work out how we would want our grandparents looked after. We are passionate about giving people the best possible care in a home-style environment.”

“Everybody is an individual and should be treated as one. Our guiding principles are dignity, independence, choice and fulfillment. These are the core values that guide us," he added.

« back to Home Page

Care Compare Wales

Search our database of more than 450 quality care providers by county,
care category
or keyword.

Need help with your search? Get help with
finding a care provider