There’s still lots going on in our Retirement Living Communities

Visit one of our Retirement Living Communities pre-lockdown and you’d be walking into a happy, positive building. The communal areas would be occupied by residents and they’d be a real sense of community.

Luckily we work with some fantastic organisations and our care providers have rallied. Explaining what social isolation means to her is Claire Davies-Sond, Registered Manager at Care Support, the care provider at Wootton Vale and Gordon Colling House, two of our Bedford schemes.

“When we heard the news we knew immediately the effect isolation could have on both our residents and the care team and had to think of a plan. Our first ‘Clap for Carers’ was well received, as too were the positive songs we played to residents immediately after the clap. This led to us writing to residents and suggesting a weekly sing song where we would have space in the gardens to socially distance and residents could join in on their own balconies. We sing and dance to whatever they request and so far this has ranged from We’ll Meet Again to the 12 days of covid right through to YMCA!

Our sing along has become a regular feel good Friday event, with residents saying they look forward to it the most every single week come rain, shine or bank holiday. Staff often dress up as well especially when we had a VE day special.”

We’ve also:

  • Created covid boredom packs that contained quizzes, colourings, crosswords, sudoku puzzles, word searches. We plan a fun fact pack too and a poem selection.
  • Placed inspirational words written on stones around the gardens for residents to enjoy if exercising, staff too have been inspired by these.
  • Delivered packets of sweets, cream eggs or slices of cake to resident’s doors just to remind them we are thinking of each and every one.
  • We are posting cards through to each resident with positive words written inside, these are being hand drawn by our night staff at Wootton Vale, with my colleague Darren the expert artist!

We’ve been fortunate to have staff, local communities and charities provide donations. This means a great deal to us and helps us make things as good as possible for the people we care for.

There’s no doubt that these are challenging times yet I am extremely proud of my team who are working tirelessly to keep residents safe both physically and mentally.

“Our first ‘Clap for Carers’ was well received, as too were the positive songs we played to residents immediately after the clap.”