Wulfrun Rose is a 67 bedded care home delivering both nursing and residential care 24hrs per day. The COVID19 Pandemic has hit us all hard but within the care social care sector and particularly care homes, I do not think that anyone fully understood the impact that isolation and lockdown would have on our elderly residents.
We are lucky to have 2 wonderful activity girls here at our home called Nicola and Shirley and together they put into practice some of the weird and wacky out of the box ideas that I come up with.
We discussed how we could put together an event which could be our main activity of the year, but how it could also combine elements of what people had lost or missed out on, including the staff members. The result was to put together a 10-day cruise production involving all residents and staff to ensure that we all had a holiday this year.
The props for the events cost in total approximately £350 but they were well worth it. But most of the items were made by the activity girls and the residents themselves.
We had painted life buoys, foiled anchors, red carpet and roped off VIP section, themed backdrops for each country visited, cruise ship backdrops for the windows and portholes and cladding for the doors. The most intricate details were not forgotten, and we had luggage labels for suitcases, boarding passes, and personalised passports. Each resident was also given a souvenir miniature suitcase containing sweets.
We asked each resident where their fondest memories were of holidays and where they would like to go and visit. This gave us the ideas of what ports to call at but was also a good reminiscence activity whilst we were doing this.
The final destination ports were:- Sailing from Holyhead in Wales (yes I know not a usual sailing port but fond memories of Wales was high on the discussions), we then went to Italy, India, Greece, Jamaica, Hawaii and America.
At each port, we had activities and food centred around that country’s culture and attributes. We had a welsh karaoke sing-along in wales for our sail away party then we had a lovely Captains Table sit down 3-course meal with classical Italian music playing and people in ball gowns and suits when in Italy, Bollywood dancing and staff in sari’s for India, Greece we struggled with a bit and ended up doing an abba tribute as the film Mama Mia was filmed in Greece. We had steel drums for Jamaica along with traditional Guinness Punch, In Hawaii we had a beach party with the home’s chickens running free and a limbo competition and we rounded things off in America with a 50’s diner-style setup, rock and roll dancing and lunch served by staff on roller skates.
The whole experience was just amazing, and the residents had the most fabulous time, it was heart moving to watch the interactions and events.
Satisfaction surveys had gone out to all residents and staff and hopefully, this will evidence the outstanding contribution this has had on people mental health and wellbeing.