Barmy Fridays At Borough Care

Barmy Fridays At Borough Care

Borough Care, Stockport’s largest not-for-profit provider of care for older people, is offering staff and visiting healthcare professionals a complimentary bacon, sausage or egg barm every Friday morning. The catering teams at each of Borough Care’s eleven homes will be serving the tasty breakfast treats to any staff on duty.

Dr Mark Ward, CEO at Borough Care, says: “Offering a free breakfast sandwich is just one of the ways we at Borough Care are showing staff how much they’re appreciated.  Our teams work really hard caring for our residents so it’s a great way of saying a big thank you.”


Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS): update on the implementation plan

Plans and processes are now under way nationally to produce a code of practice and regulations to support LPS by spring 2020 ahead of LPS implementation in October 2020.  Deprivation of liberty safeguards (DoLS) authorisations cannot be given from that date, but existing authorisations will, where appropriate, continue to their expiry date.  Hence there will be no initial bulge, and the period of time running two somewhat different systems will be a short as possible.  By October 2021 no DoLS authorisations will exist, and only LPS will be in use.

Training and implementation resources are being worked on by DHSC and groups of stakeholders.  These will start being made available probably in early autumn, followed by a public consultation on the code of practice, with the aim of having materials, both those that are generally useful and those targeted at specific groups of stakeholders, available in spring 2020.

The latest briefing from our LPS expert, Rachel Griffiths, can be found here.


Optalis brings the glitz and glamour of Hollywood to Wokingham

Optalis brings the glitz and glamour of Hollywood to Wokingham

Optalis, a local social care provider, worked with customers to put on a night to remember earlier this month. Around 180 people, dressed to the nines in formal evening attire, attended the Summer Ball held at Westmead Day Centre.

A central guiding principle of Optalis is to listen to their customers and offer genuine choice tailored to individual needs. When Sarah, who attends the Optalis Learning Disability Day Service, suggested the idea of a Summer Ball the team got behind her to make it a reality. Customers selected a ‘Movie Premiere’ theme and were involved in planning all the finer details of this special occasion.

The venue was totally transformed to provide a real wow factor. Upon arrival guests’ experienced a paparazzi moment, as they walked along the red carpet and posed for a photo alongside a classic Rolls-Royce. Inside, guests’ were welcomed by a drinks reception and a further photo opportunity next to a Hollywood–styled back drop. Professional make-up artists and hairdressers helped to add a little extra sparkle to people’s look, in the Beauty Parlour. While, Guest’s partied the night away to live music provided the House Band, which consists of Optalis customers and staff. Finishing touches to the evening included, a ‘Night at the Movies’ food theme, with hot dogs, candy floss and popcorn being served.

Julia Harris, Head of Non-Regulated Services commented: “We always want to ensure that the people we support have the same opportunities and experiences as others, and a chance to create positive memories. Our guests were treated to the red-carpet experience and we are beyond thrilled with the success of the Summer Ball. We are sure that it was an evening all those who attended won’t forget.”

The Summer Ball was made possible due to the support of a number of community organisations. Wokingham In Need and Easthampstead Rotary were two of these organisations who worked with Optalis, kindly donating the event with the 1962 Rolls-Royce.

Sue Jackson, founder of Wokingham In Need, said: “I was absolutely delighted to take part in this wonderful event. The heartfelt response from those who attended was overwhelming and to see the delight of the attendees’ faces was magical. I am glad to have supported a special event which will remain in people’s memories forever.”

The event received lots of positive feedback.

One mother commented: “I was really impressed with what I saw of the Summer Ball. My son had been excited about the idea and been eagerly looking forward to it. He had such a wonderful night. Thank you and congratulations to all at Optalis for the amazing hard work.”

Optalis provides a variety of tailored care and support services to older people, people with dementia, learning disabilities and/or physical disability and mental health conditions.

This event was just one of many initiatives held continually throughout the year as part of their co-production activities.


Care and support at King’s Lynn housing with care scheme is rated outstanding

Tenants, families and staff are celebrating after inspectors from the Care Quality Commission gave Lisbon Court an outstanding rating in a recent visit.

There are 30 flats at the housing with care scheme on Galyon Road in King’s Lynn where tenants have a tenancy agreement with Broadland Housing.  Care and support is provided at the scheme by NorseCare.  Inspectors visited in June 2019 when they spoke to tenants, staff and relatives of residents.

Within the 5 key elements of the inspection report, Lisbon court was rated at outstanding in 3 areas – being praised for the caring, responsive and well-led aspects of the report, and good for the safe and effective elements of the report.

Inspectors remarked how staff “went above and beyond what was expected of them to help ensure people were not isolated and continued to be engaged in the service and wider community and take part in meaningful activity. “

The report also states that: “People (the tenants) thrive in this environment, for example by regaining their confidence, learning to mobilise again and through improved health with access to the right medication and health support.  One person said, “I consider myself lucky to be here.”

NorseCare’s manager Vanessa Thaxter and her management team at Lisbon Court were singled out for praise by the inspection with this quote from a visiting care professional; “From a management perspective they have good oversight of what is happening within the complex, they know the tenants and their current needs.  I have always found them willing to work alongside myself and other professionals and always have the tenant’s best interests at the forefront of everything they do.”

Vanessa is understandably proud of her team: “We’re obviously delighted with the report.  The team here at Lisbon court do a phenomenal job.  We support the tenants, enabling them to be as independent as they can be, whilst giving them as much care and support as they need.  We are focused on helping people to pursue their hobbies and continue to access the local community as we know how important that is for their wellbeing.”

Tenants, families, friends and members of the local community will celebrate the award of the Outstanding rating with a party at the scheme.


An outstanding home in the heart of the Medway towns

An outstanding home in the heart of the Medway towns

Amherst Court in Chatham, Medway, is owned and operated by Avante Care & Support and offers care for older people living with dementia. It is a popular home in the local community and with the most recent CQC inspection retaining its outstanding rating for its fourth year,it is obvious the home is providing more than just good care.

The home boasts beautifully decorated lounges, en-suite bedrooms, Snips hair salon and the recently refurbished Rosie Lee’s café.

Rosie Lee’s is a dementia friendly café open to residents, family members and staff and the general public. The refurbishment includes a theme and menu chosen by the residents at the home. A children’s play area has also been introduced and a children’s menu to encourage families to the café.

The café also supports the care staff with daily activities and events happening across the home, all tailored to each individual’s needs and interests.

The staff and residents are often fund raising to support extra special events and enhance current scheduled activities. A perfect example of this is the recent 50 mile sponsored walk residents and staff took part in, walking alongthe Saxon Shore Way from Medway to Dover to raise money to create a sensory garden and bench in the grounds surrounding the home.

Marie Taylor, Activities Co-ordinator said, ‘We walked a total of 50 miles along the Saxon Shore Coastline. – It was nautical themed fancy dress. We also had the local Army cadets join us for the first part of the walk. We began on the 15 June walking from Rochester Castle to Bobbing. The second walk was on 26 June and it was military themed. We walked from Whitstable to Margate on possibly the windiest day of the year! Due to the weather only staff walked this part of the walk but we celebrated with residents upon our return.

The last part of the walk was from Sandwich to the White Cliffs of Dover which we also linked in with a Gay Pride theme.

We met some lovely people along the way, who donated money and offered support.

We also had inspiration for the garden, including a remembrance bench which we saw in Whitstable which we would love to incorporate as a focal piece at Amherst Court.

On the 10 July we held an after party on the ground floor in the Rosie Lee café to celebrate our achievements and to announce we had raised £2150 from our sponsored walk’.

Since the sponsored walk staff have had meetings with residents to set out a plan for the garden, all based on the residents suggestions and ideas. The coordination of these meetings and plans have all been been supported by Sylvia and Pauline, two residents who now work as volunteers on the reception desk at Amherst Court.


Artists share results of groundbreaking dementia study

Artists share results of groundbreaking dementia study

A pioneering pilot study exploring the impact of creative workshops on those living with dementia at Belong Crewe care village has proved a huge success, with the findings being evaluated by the Centre for Collaborative Innovation in Dementia at Liverpool John Moores University to assess how the arts can be effectively embedded into other care environments.

Launched in January, the pilot marks the first phase of Belong’s unique three-year research project with Liverpool’s centre for the contemporary arts, Bluecoat. As part of the collaboration, named ‘Where the Arts Belong’, Bluecoat commissioned six critically acclaimed artists, with many years of nationally recognised practice between them, to work in ‘residency’ at the care village. Here, they engaged residents, family members and support teams in a bespoke six-month art programme, boasting over 70 different workshops ranging from storytelling and sculpture to music and dance.

Evaluation of the residences so far show that these experimental initiatives are improving the lives of the individuals involved, especially those living with dementia. Early results include high participation, enhanced cognitive capacity and an increased sense of community amongst previously isolated individuals.

The resounding success of the first stage of the project was captured at a celebratory event at Belong. Here, the findings were showcased alongside an impressive art exhibition, produced by participants, ranging from clay cabbage leaf plates to multimedia works exploring the diverse perspectives of people living with dementia. These research insights will inform future practice at the care operator’s upcoming state-of-the art villages in Birkdale and Chester, which are due to open next year, and will be the first to have permanent staff trained in specialist arts provision.

Belong Deputy Chief Executive, Tracy Paine, said: “We are thrilled with the outcomes of the pilot study, which are making a real contribution to best practice in this area. The next stage of the project will see the ‘artist in residency’ scheme implemented at our new care villages, helping our customers live happier and more enriched lives.”

Laura Yates, Acting Head of Participation at Bluecoat, added: “The artist workshops have had an incredible impact on the residents and their families, providing a valuable tool to unlock memories and aid cognitive function. We look forward to building on these creative initiatives with Belong in the future to further improve the lives of those with dementia.”

Members of the public are invited to take part in a series of outreach art workshops, which will take place at The Atkinson in Southport, from October.

To find out more information on the project and any upcoming events, please visit: www.belong.org.uk/bluecoat/


Borough Care Hosts National Citizen Service Projects

Borough Care Hosts National Citizen Service Projects

Borough Care, the largest not-for-profit provider of care for older people in Stockport, has linked up with The Challenge, one of the leading providers of the National Citizen Service. National Citizen Service projects will be taking place initially at two of Borough Care’s homes, Shepley House in Hazel Grove and Lisburne Court in Offerton.

National Citizen Service is a government-backed programme that brings together young people from different backgrounds for a common purpose. Open to young people between the ages of fifteen and seventeen, the programme helps them develop skills for their working life and the transition into adulthood.

The first Borough Care project recently took place at Shepley House.  A group of young people visited the home to discuss with residents and staff what the project should entail.  As the home had recently put up some greenhouses and has apple trees, it was decided to create an allotment area.  To raise money for the materials to complete the projects, the NCS volunteers did a sponsored walk around the trail of giant painted frogs in Stockport.  Local companies also kindly donated products. During their volunteer day, the young people constructed two raised beds and planted them out, one with vegetable seeds and one with fruit.  Shepley House residents will be involved in helping to look after the fruit and vegetables, which will be used by the home’s catering team.

Commenting on the National Citizen Service project Nerys Carpenter, Home Manager at Shepley House, says: “It’s been fantastic having the young people in to do the project.  They have been brilliant around the residents, who have really enjoyed sitting and chatting to them.  The young people were very enthusiastic, came up with some good ideas and really got stuck into the project.  Besides helping with the allotment, we wanted to create another area that residents can come and sit out in, as at the moment everyone congregates in the same space.  We decided the building wall by the new seating area needed brightening up so it would be a nicer place to sit.

The young people presented a design for this mural and everyone at Shepley House loved it.  Being very colourful, the design fits perfectly with Borough Care’s logo and strapline ‘Life in Colour’.  At Borough Care, we believe our residents should live colourful lives and continue to do the things they love.  Now the project is completed, our residents are looking forward to enjoying the outside space and sampling the fruit and veg.  We’re keen to maintain the relationships that have developed between the young volunteers and our residents through visits and other activities in the future.”

The mural design was the idea of art loving Olivia Barry, 16, one of the NCS volunteers working on the Shepley House project.  The home staff and residents said they wanted something colourful so Olivia decided upon a rainbow as the main part of the design, as it is so bright and cheerful.  Olivia’s fellow volunteer, Scarlet Aubert, from Gatley, decided to participate in NCS to make new friends and help her become more confident.  Scarlet says: “I’ve really enjoyed being part of the team; everyone has got on well together.  I like helping others and, in doing this project, it feels like we’re all making a difference.  The residents I have spoken to have all loved what we’ve done, which is great.”

Dr Mark Ward, CEO at Borough Care, says: “Intergenerational relationships help enrich the lives of older and younger people alike and have many benefits for all concerned.  Getting involved with the National Citizen Service is a great way for our residents to interact with young people and for the young volunteers to make a positive contribution to the lives of older people.”


Care home residents put(t) their golf skills to the test

Care home residents put(t) their golf skills to the test

Residents at NorseCare’s Lydia Eva Court in Gorleston, near Great Yarmouth have been enjoying a crazy golf session using equipment specially made for them by a local Men’s Shed community organisation, using funding from Active Norfolk.

NorseCare teamed up with the Poringland Men’s Shed – a community organisation who meet regularly to make woodwork projects for the local area – and set them a task to make five sets of crazy golf holes. Each of the sets will be shared across 5 of NorseCare’s care homes in Norwich and the East coast. The first 5 hole ‘course’ was completed this week and used for the first time at Lydia Eva Court care home, where up to 89 people living with dementia are provided with care and support.

Residents, families and representatives from Active Norfolk and the volunteers from Poringland Men’s Shed gathered in the sunshine in the gardens of Lydia Eva Court to watch as residents took part with NorseCare’s Activities and Wellbeing co-ordinators.

Henry Gowman, one of the volunteers from the Men’s Shed spoke about the project; “It was delightful to see the residents using the equipment and their evident enjoyment. To see our work being so well received gives us the confidence to make the next batch of games.”

Sandra Drake, NorseCare’s Volunteer and Wellbeing Co-ordinator added her thoughts: “We want to thank Active Norfolk for providing us with the funding and the Men’s Shed for making this happen. It’s an activity that families and friends can enjoy together now and for the future. We can’t wait to get the other courses finished and out to the other homes.”

Resident Evan at Lydia Eva Court enjoyed his day: “I’ve never played golf before, I didn’t realise how good I was at it!”

Ryan Hughes from Active Norfolk, who provided the funding for the project via their SAIL project, also took part on the day: “The crazy golf sets are part of our SAIL project, which looks to not only encourage residents to be more active, but to try and do this in the outdoor environment where possible. There are numerous positive effects upon wellbeing from being able to spend time outdoors, and by providing different opportunities within the gardens of care settings, we are hoping to encourage people to enjoy being outdoors as much as possible.”

As part of their Wellbeing Strategy, NorseCare are committed to providing the widest variety of activities, events and opportunities to residents and tenants. Activities and events are focused on providing personally tailored, stimulating and engaging activities to support residents’ wellbeing, influenced by their life histories and linked to areas of wellbeing including physical, sensory, cognitive and spiritual needs.


Pauline and Sheila celebrate their special bond on International Friendship Day

Pauline and Sheila celebrate their special bond on International Friendship Day

Pauline Barry and Sheila Simpson are fellow residents at Stoke Mandeville nursing home, Fremantle Court, run by local care provider The Fremantle Trust. They shared a special moment on Tuesday 30th July to mark International Friendship Day.

In 2011 the 30th July was declared International Friendship Day by the General Assembly of United Nations. While the day is symbolic of global relations, it also recognises the importance of friendship at a grassroots level in local communities.

73-year-old Pauline moved into Fremantle Court three months ago. A naturally caring and sensitive person, Pauline soon became part of the community and struck up a friendship with Sheila after taking a special interest in getting involved in the Trust’s Bedside Buddies initiative.

Bedside Buddies supports residents who are unable to participate in activities in the main communal areas and involves 1-1 sessions devoted to reminiscence, storytelling and interactive sessions. Pauline enjoys spending time with Sheila and has enabled her to feel more involved in activities as a result of their friendship.

Pauline’s listening skills and her empathy and compassion were soon picked up on by the team at Fremantle Court, and she now supports new residents at the home by chatting to them and helping them to feel at ease.

Commenting on the special occasion, community and lifestyle manager at the Trust, Sue Faulkner, said: “Pauline and Sheila have a really special bond and enjoy spending quality time together chatting and sharing stories. It is wonderful to see that the Bedside Buddies initiative has come full circle and now residents are volunteering their time to help others.

“We wanted to take the opportunity to celebrate this on International Friendship Day as relationships are so important as the foundation of our thriving community here at Fremantle Court.”

Sheila added: “I was more than happy to present Pauline with a thank you gift as she truly deserves it.”


Bournemouth care home staff proudly present Caring Canines’ Peg Otway Memorial Award

Bournemouth care home staff proudly present Caring Canines’ Peg Otway Memorial Award

Staff at Care South’s Castle Dene care home in Bournemouth were honoured to attend the presentation of the Peg Otway Memorial award to one of their regular visitors recently.

To celebrate many years of visiting Castle Dene, the team at the home nominated Jane Kempton and her four legged friend Max for the Peg Otway Memorial Award. Jane and Max were nominated for the award for their hard work, dedication and commitment to helping people in the community understand dogs and be confident in their company.

Lauren Tompkins, Activities Lead at Castle Dene said: “We were so proud that our nomination for Jane and Max was successful and even better that we could be there to see them be presented with the award, which came as a great shock to them!

“Jane and Max are a valued part of the Castle Dene family, and helps all of us here in so many different ways. Even those who prefer to keep themselves to themselves, always make an effort to come and see Jane and Max, this is just our way of saying thank you.”

Jane and Max were nominated for the award by Deputy Home Manager Anne Teversham. The Peg Otway Memorial Award is an annual prize by Caring Canines given to those who truly deserve to be recognised, it is nominated for and then assessed by three independent judges.