As part of Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance's blended learning package for care workers, together with US digital online training company Toolwire, we produced an experiential eLearning resource.
The programme evokes the fundamentals of REAL Communication, providing an emotional context for learning about how to better communicate with people with dementia.
It demonstrates how the adoption of the techniques can improve carers' engagement with service users.
We also produced an iPad App, 'Let's Talk' for use on iPads provided as part of the initiative.The project won Gold Award at the National Learning Awards.
Norfolk & Suffolk Dementia Alliance
Let's Talk! (2013/4)
We made a short film for London Play's Heritage Lottery funded project, 'Evacuee Play Trove'. We researched, interviewed and then filmed a number World War II evacuees about their experiences. These were shared with primary school children in East London who, working with a theatre company, responded with the creation of their own theatrical response to the memories.
Evacuee Play Trove (2013)
Managers and staff said that they appreciated the positive comments about what works well in their homes that as a result of their hard work.
A number of care homes reported that they had made positive changes as a result of the feedback. This included the introduction of evening activities for residents, MY Home Life diaries to record positive feedback about the home with suggestions for improvements and more opportunities provided for staff members to simply sit and chat with the residents.
Staff said, “A good home has a friendly welcome, well trained and non-judgemental staff, a show of diversity, where shared knowledge and moving with the times is encouraged" but "the staffing ratio should be changed across the board in all homes, to enable staff to also enjoy quality time with the residents.”
Relatives and friends commented “Communication is a key element in making older people feel they are cared for and loved" and that “attention to detail is vital – staff must get to know each resident individually.”
Over 3,500 replies re-inforced what we often say at Many Happy Returns – that three of the most important things to everyone in care homes and particularly residents and their families are TIME, ACTIVITIES (engagement and conversation) and TRAINING.
The Big Care Home Conversation was just that. We conceived the project, designing a pack of colourful, useful resources for care homes, asking them to create 'wish trees' and asked residents, their families, friends and staff to think positively about care homes now and to dream about what they might be improved in the future – and how we might get there.
Residents commented “They reassure me if I am scared, listen and show me I am a valued human being,” but “the staff are too busy, they need more time to talk to us...” and "we want more activities, conversation and opportunities to go outside the home."
MY Home Life
The Big Care Home Conversation (2012)
We are always keen to co-operate and collaborate with other organisations who share our outlook and passions and here are some of our partner projects. If you would like to talk to us about a project please contact us.
Buy 1940s cards for sharing with people over 75 years old
Buy 1950s cards for sharing with people in their 60s and over
Co-operation and Collaborations
Partners and Friends
We are proud to work with a range of other organisations leading innovation forward:
Read Sarah's Blog
TheAgePage reflects the values of REAL Communication and Sarah's ongoing advocacy of older people.
My home life
Care Charts UK