A CHARITY worker has won a major award for his help aiding the lives of people with health conditions and disabilities.

Neil O'Toole, a facilities assistant with Making Space, was named ancillary worker of the year at the Great British Care Awards for his dedication to the job.

After being a civil engineering and construction business owner, Neil started working with the charity in 2011 and hasn’t looked back since.

His role sees him working in residential care homes and supported housing, as well as in the Making Space head office on Allen St, helping adults with mental health conditions, learning disabilities and dementia with their homes and gardens.

Neil, 45, said: "I get a lot of pleasure from doing very simple things, because I can see the difference it makes to people’s lives.

"Working on big outdoor jobs, on bridges and in sewers, with my previous company was anonymous.

"Here, I’m being welcomed into people’s homes and personal spaces, and I see how happy what I’m doing makes them.

"People are so genuine when they thank me - something as simple as hanging a picture brings a joy and appreciation that’s wonderful to experience. And it’s every day."

Rachel Peacock, CEO of Making Space, said: "Neil comes into contact with many people who use our services every day, and every one of them is full of praise for him.

"He has a gentle humour, an empathetic manner and time for everyone.

"He’s friendly and approachable and people really enjoy seeing him around and chatting to him.

"Staff and residents alike all have the highest respect for Neil, and he thoroughly deserves this recognition."

This year, Making Space has worked with 15,000 adults within their communities and in supported housing, extra care housing and residential care homes.