Meet our Activities Coordinator, Michael Butler
Hi, my name is Michael Butler and I am the Activities Coordinator at Hollyfields. I joined the team back in July 2007 and have held this position since then.
During my time at the home, I have become NAPA-qualified, been a finalist for Activities Coordinator of the Year twice in the Barchester Care Awards and reached the finals at the Great British Care Awards (West Midlands) in 2014 and 2017. In 2015, I won the award for Barchester's Charitable Foundation Champion and was also previously a trustee. I have also written an article for Barchester's blog, titled, 'A day in the life of an activities coordinator at Barchester', which you can read by clicking here.
My role as Activities Coordinator involves providing those we support with a meaningful and bespoke activities programme and to help improve their well-being, promoting independence on a daily basis. My role also involves engaging residents with their local community, either through community groups attending the home or through residents enjoying trips out.
Our activities programmes are based on residents' interests and include occupational therapy, sensory stimulation, cognitive activities, arts and crafts, food-based activities and outdoor community events.
Activities at Hollyfields
Our Activities programme is formulated using resident requests and feedback from resident meetings. Residents are involved in planning the programme with things they they would like to do throughout the year. There is a mixture of activities that take place including both group and 1-1 engagement. Residents at Hollyfields particularly enjoy movement to music activities enabling them to increase their level of physical abilities and have fun at the same time, whilst others enjoy musical singalongs and food based activities throughout the week.
We have a mini bus that enables us to reconnect our residents with their community in ways that suite themselves as individuals. This can be achieved by visiting local farms, Georgian towns, local attractions and even the local public house for lunch with friends. Hollyfields have a great relationship with their local community and have visits from local organisations such as The Wyre Community Land Trust and are currently undertaking a 12 week funded project from Arts Etc. Residents at Hollyfields enjoy Pet Therapy visits from their pet rabbit 'Thumper' and like to help clean and feed him daily. Relatives can be encouraged to join us for activities and again are very supportive with delivering theme days and fundraising events within the home.
Life at Hollyfields Care Home
Garden visits are underway at Hollyfields. Residents and their loved ones have been reunited after spending months apart during the current COVID19 Pandemic. Sticking to current guidelines, relatives were able to meet their loved ones face-to-face for the first time since March. One resident Celebrated his 81st birthday on the day he received a visit from his wife and son, which was wonderful!
A Right Royal Thank Uou
Fiona Brewin and her team at Hollyfields received two very special letters to thank everyone for their hard work and dedication throughout the current pandemic.
The first Letter came from Lt Col Patrick Holcroft LVO OBE (Lord-Lieutenant of Worcestershire), and read: ‘The innovation, collaboration, courage and selflessness shown by so many across the County during the COVID-19 pandemic has been truly inspirational and uplifting. As her Majesty The Queen’s representative, I would like to thank you all for the wonderful contribution you have made to the County during these extraordinary and challenging times.’
The second Letter came from Councillor Sarah Rook (Kidderminster Town Mayor), and read: ‘I wanted to thank you for the vital role you and your staff have played in the ongoing COVID-19 situation. You have worked through the hardest weeks of our lives during this pandemic. This has never deterred you from ensuring that each and every one of our dearly loved residents have been given the best person-centred care with sincere love and affection.’
An Evening Stroll
Residents at Hollyfields enjoyed an early evening stroll around the grounds, just as it started to cool a little and nobody was around. The birds were singing and the flowers were smelling lovely. It was a peaceful and relaxing way to finish the day!
A Big Thank You
At Hollyfields, we have had many a thank you cards and gifts for the work we have been doing during this current pandemic, but Katie Charles, a daughter of a Care Assistant at the home, decided to colour 50 of these beautiful posters to say thank you. These have been placed in the windows of the home to show a moment of solidarity during these tough times. Well done, Katie!
Residents were treated to a day of summer holidays. With fish and chips served in boxes and ice creams made with their favourite flavours, everyone was excited and had a great day.
There were giant beech balls, bubble machines, paddling pools and inflatable fun. The day was a huge success and we even sang seaside-themed songs and 'Summer Holiday' by Cliff Richards.
Residents really enjoyed the VE Day celebrations with a host of activities and fancy dress.Themed food, prepared by our talented chef, Sarah, added a great touch to our street party too.
We placed a rainbow arch outside Hollyfields and Ivy House to show solidarity during the coronavirus pandemic. The arch was put together by Jade O'Brien, a care assistant at the home, who said it was her aim to brighten up the days of both the care staff and the residents living at the home.
We also used the arch to acknowledge the 2 minutes silence to mark 75 years of VE Day. Staff joined forces to create a Tik Tok video and show their thanks to other key workers working on the front line.