Our 'Your Vote Counts' campaign reached its climax on Polling Day, Thursday 7 May, with teams in all of our homes making sure residents had the opportunity to have their say.

Across all our regions, residents in our care homes made their way to their local polling stations to cast their vote in the General Election.

After weeks of activities, including visits by parliamentary candidates to debate the "hot" issues, the creation of ballot boxes and mock voting booths, a huge amount of information sharing and much more besides, colleagues in all our homes made tremendous efforts to ensure residents got to the Polls to make their voices heard.

One of our oldest residents, aged 104, was, in her words "determined and adamant" that she would go in person to the polling station, having never failed to vote in any election - her carer made sure that happened - and that was a story reiterated throughout the Trust.

Adorned with rosettes, flags and balloons, OSJCT residents and employees made a cheerful sight as they wended their way to the ballot boxes at their local polling stations.

The campaign will have wider and longer lasting effects than just getting residents out to vote at this important election.  As a result of the activities organised, links with local communities have been strengthened, with plenty of potential benefits in terms of outings and events for residents and, for those who have visited, a much greater awareness of what life in care homes is really like - a positive experience for all concerned!