While the past few months have brought unprecedented restrictions for all of us, life at Cherry Wood Grange has by no means slowed down. Our much-loved residents have been as active as ever while we’ve been coming up with creative new home-based activities and alternative ways to stay in touch with loved ones.
We’ve all got involved in embracing new technology in order for our residents to connect with friends and family via virtual meet ups, while in-person visits had temporarily been put on hold. By now, the world has become very familiar with the various apps, from Zoom to Whatsapp, which have allowed multiple family members to dial in and video chat together with our residents.
In fact, we’ve found that friends and relatives have been able to stay in touch more than ever before thanks to this new technology. What a treat it has been to see our residents faces lighting up at the sight of their children and grandchildren from around the country. One resident was over the moon to be able to join an Easter sermon with family all the way over in New Zealand! A truly touching experience.
With the absence of our regular visiting entertainers, we’ve had to create our own amusement at Cherry Wood Grange and have been loving the introduction of musical bingo. It’s managed to challenged our music knowledge as well as our singing skills and has provided us with hours of laughter. And even with social distancing restrictions in place, we have managed to stage a few special outdoor performances including opera from Sam, Country and Western from Ashlea, accordion music from Alex and a classic sing-a-long with Wendy!
Of course, while our day trips have been momentarily paused, this simply meant we had to bring the outside celebrations to us, and so we’ve been making an event of everything from National Cider Day to National Olive Day! When the Queen’s birthday came around we decided this was the perfect excuse to dust off the bunting, open the Pimms and have a classic British Garden Party!
We have also been getting as crafty as ever, from making our own VE Day decorations to getting involved in colour therapy. All of which has provided endless creative inspiration and brought everyone together in these challenging times. In fact, it has only helped to grow the community spirit within our home and I’m sure we will be keeping some of our new found entertainment going for months to come.
And we were all overjoyed when our very own central office sent over treats for our carers and resident to enjoy; one day it was an ice cream van, the next it was a surprise batch of lollipops and snow cones. We were even sent sensory packs of oils and creams designed to trigger beautiful memories. Such simple gestures to let us know we are, as ever, in their hearts and minds – they were greatly appreciated and went down a treat.