We were very pleased to receive partial funding of £6,000 from Leicestershire County Council’s SHIRE grants fund to create a resource for visitors.
The hope was that we could empower visitors to trial activities and learning with their loved one that they were going to see and, in turn, boost the quality of visits for older people receiving care as well as the enjoyment of them for visitors too.
We applied for the funds when care settings were barely open at all to visitors. We felt that we could create a resource to support and encourage better quality visits to care settings without increasing any risk to residents living there.
We also hoped that the resource would improve the visiting experience for relatives and friends who have reported finding it upsetting and hard to go to see their loved one in a care setting at times.
We have been working with two experienced volunteers and wanted to take time to thank them individually for their contributions to this project, for which we have been very grateful.
Nicky Reynolds who worked in care settings for a long time, notably as an activity coordinator for many years. She has also been a volunteer with L4A and has done everything from leading craft sessions to letter writing and from word puzzles through to big games.
Dee Lehan-Matthews has had personal experience of care homes for her own loved ones and wanted to use that knowledge and experience to share with others in the same position. We have benefitted from Dee’s time and dedication as a volunteer for almost a decade.
Dee and Nicky are both very familiar with a range of different care settings, as well as dementia. We met regularly with us during the creation of this resource to sense check ideas, and to ensure that we were writing in the correct tone etc. They also shared a wealth of ideas that have fed into the final resource. Thank you very much to Nicky and Dee for their work with us on this.
We hope to be able to finalise the resource and share it with you all very soon!