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Best in the business

HFI Training Awards winners 2021

Jimmy Lee Richardson Award for top marks in the Diploma Part Two: Nicola Bourne, Naturalife, Dorchester.

HFMA/Roger Lane Scholarship Award for the Scholarship Candidate with the highest mark: Christina Sinclair, Food For Living, Dartford.

Teddie Marston Award for the Diploma Part Two Candidate who has shown exceptional understanding of the principles of health food and natural healing: Ljiljana Radencic, Evergreen Healthfoods, Galway.

NAHS Ian Martin Award for the best NAHS Candidate: Heather Cheney, The Natural Store, Helston.

Nicola Bourne
Nicola Bourne has been involved in the health food trade her whole life as her father established Naturalife Wholefoods in Crewkerne, Somerset, in 1988. She feels ‘really fortunate’ to have grown up with the knowledge of alternative medicine, natural health and a healthy lifestyle.

Over the years the family business has grown and they now own a chain of eight stores across Somerset and Dorset including The Bay Tree, Toucan and Sunseed. Nicola predominantly works at Naturalife’s Dorchester branch and enjoyed working through the HFI Diploma Course and says that she greatly benefitted from the broad knowledge that it provides. Over the years she has also gained a BTEC in Nutrition, and Certificates in phytotherapy, crystal healing and is a Reiki Master.

Heather Cheney
Heather has worked at The Natural Store in Helston for almost 17 years and has been the manager for much of that time. Shortly after she started working there she completed an early version of the HFI Part One Course and says that it was the best grounding in the business she could have had.

All staff are encouraged to enrol on HFI training courses and to understand and adhere to the HFI protocol. She chose to do the course a second time and has found it an excellent refresher which enables her to coach those members of staff doing it for the first time.

Heather says that a lot has changed in the intervening years, in understanding good nutrition, lifestyle decisions, even regulations regarding how and what they can sell, so she knows how important it is to keep up with the latest laws, guidelines and trends. She enjoys the challenge.

Lily Radencic
Lily is Sales Advisor at Evergreen in Oranmore, one of the eight Evergreen Healthfoods stores based in Galway, Ireland. Training sessions take place on a weekly basis with different sales representatives of the brands stocked. She has sat for both Certificate and Diploma HFI exams in the last two years.

“I have become more relaxed with customers coming into the store asking for specific remedies and more confident in explaining the effects and possible contraindications when taking natural supplements,” she says.

Lily is Croatian and a professor of Croatian language, literature and history. During lockdown, she took up Lego Creator. “Never was a fan but in the last year everything changed so I turned to something different, something totally out of the box for me,” she says. “I like to challenge myself.”

Christina Sinclair
Christina Sinclair has worked at Food for Living in Dartford for three years and says that her time there has been a constant learning curve. She enjoyed doing the HFI Diploma Part One to build her knowledge of all the different foods, supplements and herbs. Her employer, John Frisby, has been a constant source of specialist information, always finding time to answer her questions and providing invaluable guidance.

She believes that learning is a never-ending journey, and really enjoys working with customers, promoting and selling natural health products. She has always had an affinity with herbs and nature but her interest in natural health began in earnest about 30 years ago when she became ill with a serious digestive system disorder. She began researching alternative health options, and her journey into natural health foods and supplements had begun.

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