Caroline J Benham
Bright Copper Kettles CIC
Many people have a set belief about what a care home activity coordinator is and I have found lots of people to have unrealistic and totally impractical ideas about what the activity coordinator in 'their' care home SHOULD be doing.
Here are a few of my thoughts on the matter.
Being an activity coordinator isn't about being the care home clown, the lead singer or the events organiser (although sometimes it is 🤷)
It's about courage.
And it's about love.
It's about inspiring your team to be a part of your activity programme support group.
And guiding and supporting them to do as you do.
It's about learning together.
It's about finding everyone's personal strengths and using that knowledge to encourage and help each person to grow in confidence
Whether they are colleagues or residents
It's about supporting everyone who has something to offer to shine.
It's about being present.
It's about listening and engaging in conversations that matter
Whether the communication is offered verbally, through eye contact, facial expressions, gestures or posture.
It's about taking the time to sit with someone, or a small group of adults who have memories and dreams, and finding out what those are for each of them.
It's about encouraging them to treasure their memories.
And finding ways to support them to share them with you and with others.
It's about supporting them to realise their dreams wherever possible.
It's about reaching for the stars and being happy if you only reach the moon!
It's about playing together and laughing together
And having fun.
It's about sharing - the news of the day, your family photos and theirs.
It's about sharing your joys
And your woes
It's about being grateful for the lives that we have and the lives that we share.
And the gifts that we have.
And the people we love.
It's about knowing that there is support and love for everyone.
No matter what they are going through or where they are heading.
It's about belonging.
And including everyone else in your club/tribe (or whatever everyone likes to call it these days);
Your residents - and their family and friends
Your support network - entertainers, hairdressers and barbers, chiropodists, therapists, et al.
Your co-workers, CQC, managers and care home owners.
It's about loving each other.
And honouring each other.
It's about family
And their family
And the family that you all belong to together.