Residents at Burnworthy House in South Petherton have been tirelessly knitting for months to produce blankets to donate to the Cats Protection League to ensure the animals are warm in cold weather spells.
The idea came after they donated blankets and pom-poms to the RSPCA in the winter to provide warmth and entertainment for the puppies and kittens.
Each week 10-15 residents take part in the knitting group with help from Claire Davis, Activity Co-ordinator and Gwen Trott, a resident’s daughter.
Karen Roberts, Manager of Burnworthy House, said “The Nifty Knitters has become a very popular activity in the home, attracting more residents to join since it first started last year. It has become a social occasion for the ladies and gentlemen who take part as they enjoy refreshments, a good chat and sometimes a singsong whilst they are busy knitting. In the warmer weather, everyone sits outside and chats about their memories of summer holidays, where they have been and family occasions.”
On 6th March Somerset Care played host to over 160 delegates at Dillington House, near Ilminster. The conference entitled ‘Dementia-The Learning Curve’ welcomed Somerset Care staff, Care Professionals and Commissioners to debate, exchange ideas and share current best practice in dementia care services.
Delegates heard keynote speeches from Sarah Pickup, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) and Angela Rippon OBE, Co-Chair of the Dementia Friendly Communities Champion Group.
The purpose of the conference was to share Somerset Care’s dementia services called ‘PETALS’, the unique service delivers dementia care and support services to people living in their own homes and within Somerset Care’s residential and nursing homes across the South West.
Speaking on the conference, Chief Executive, Alyson Martin MBE, said, “The conference was an excellent opportunity to share ideas and best practice on improving services for people living with dementia. We were delighted that many people who attended felt the day was inspiring and informative.”
Greenhill House will welcome a very special guest next month, when Lord Bath visits to lay the foundation stone of the new home.
The development project, which is due for completion in May 2014, will see the current home replaced with a brand new 36-bed care home providing 20 residential and 16 dementia care beds. Extra care apartments will also be built on the site.
Lord Bath will be joined at the ceremony on 16th November by pupils from Cheddar First School and Fairlands Middle School, who will be helping to bury a time capsule on the site.
Kay Bidgood, Manager of Greenhill House, said, “We are delighted that Lord Bath has agreed to lay the foundation stone at the home, and that local pupils are taking part in the ceremony. The contents of the capsule are a very important resource for future generations, and we are grateful for their help in deciding what should be included.”
Somerset Care played host to a visitor from Australia last week who came to learn about the company’s award winning PETALS dementia care, quality assurance system and the Gold Standard Framework Award.
Beth Davidson-Park, Director of Strategy and Business Development, works for Southern Cross Care (South Australia and Northern Territories) alongside Somerset Care’s former CEO Andrew Larpent.
During Beth’s time with Somerset Care she visited two of its care homes, Croft House in Williton and Oak Trees in Bridgwater. At Croft House she was shown the Archie Project, a recently launched programme which aims to make Williton a dementia friendly community. Whilst on her visit Beth was also involved with judging the company’s dementia artwork competition in preparation for a 2013 calendar which will be released later in the year.
Speaking on Beth’s visit, Jane Lynch, Assistant Director of Residential Services, said, “Somerset Care is extremely proud of the services we provide to people living with dementia and those people nearing the end of their lives. It was a wonderful experience to share our PETALS dementia care and Gold Standard Framework with Beth, and we hope this helps her with developing the care Southern Cross Care deliver in Australia.”
Somerset Care played host to a group of health and care professionals from Spain last week, who came to learn about the company’s award winning ‘PETALS‘ dementia care. The visitors were from Mutua de Terrassa, Barcelona, a not for profit organisation.
They first visited Somerset Care in 2011 after hearing about their dementia care through Bradford University, with whom Somerset Care work very closely. The visitors requested a return trip this year to look at Somerset Care’s latest developments in the field, in particular its work on dementia care environments (for which it won a national award in 2010) and personalisation of the service.
Jane Lynch, Assistant Director of Residential Care and Dementia Care Specialist, said, “Somerset Care is very proud of its dementia care service and is pleased to show its work off to colleagues in the care sector. We hope that our visitors have found their visit to some of our ten dementia care units useful, they have told us how impressed they are and that they intend to go back to Barcelona and implement some changes to the way they deliver person centred dementia care.”
Somerset Care will welcome a further international visitor next month when a health care professional from Australia comes to learn about its dementia care.