A Liverpool charity worker has been donning full Elvis gear and gyrating and crooning his way through the pandemic, via a high octane series of online shows.
This #UKCharityWeek, Tony Beard, Toxteth’s answer to the King, has gone out of his way to raise a smile amongst staff and the people he cares for to ensure they are never Lonesome Tonight.
The Elvis superfan and part-time tribute performer is a team leader at Devonshire Road supported housing in Liverpool. The service, operated by adult health and social care charity Making Space, enables 13 adults living with mental health conditions to live independently.
Before turning his hand to social care, Tony was in hospitality, working in a city Hotel. But the music fan came to realise he had more to give than ensuring the hotel’s 194 rooms had immaculate bed linen and opted for a change of direction.
Tony joined the service in April 2019 and was named team leader six months later.
Kim Smith, Tony’s line manager at Making Space, said:
“It was clear from the outset that not only does Tony have a genuine passion for supporting adults with mental health conditions and a desire to provide a high-quality service, but that his people management skills were also second to none.
“Tony is open, friendly and approachable. He has a great sense of humour, which can definitely help especially through difficult times, but he always remains professional.
“He has shown a real passion for improving the lives of the people who live at the service and doing everything he can to offer support, including raising extra funds online during a very tricky time for fundraising.
“He has the compassion and dedication to pull everyone together to get through this challenging period.”
In June 2020, Tony made a national newspaper’s Happy List, which featured 50 people who have made an outstanding contribution to society.