Added on: 30th May, 2018 by Isabelle_43970
Residents at Bupa Abbotsleigh Mews have been brought a new lease of life by regular visits from the children at Purple Willows Nursery, which neighbours the home on Old Farm Road East, in Sidcup.
Home Manager, Tracey Cheeseman, having researched the positive impact that spending time with children can have on elderly people, felt inspired to try to improve the wellbeing of her residents.
Tracey wrote to residents to ask how they would feel about the children visiting, and was overwhelmed by the positive response. Having also put the idea to Abbotsleigh Mews staff, and to Purple Willows’ Nursery Manager Kellie Stratton, an agreement was pulled together between the nursery and the care home, and parents were asked to consent to their children visiting with the residents at the home.
“The children now come to us once a week, and it is a joy to see”, says Tracey, “in some cases the age gap between the two is over 90 years – and yet they are able to come together and take part in activities such as singing and story-telling.”
Some of the children have also been interacting with residents at the home’s dementia unit. The unit has a special dementia garden, which has been designed with safety in mind and includes big outdoor games like Connect4 and bowls.
“We really hope that from through this project, the children will gain an enhanced understanding of older generations, and that they will learn the best way to interact with people with dementia” says Kellie.
Abbotsleigh Mews includes four individual homes covering a range of specialist care needs including dementia, Parkinson’s disease and palliative care.