Meet our Activities Coordinator, Sarah Purdy
Hi I’m Sarah. I have worked in care for 14 years, working my way up to Senior Carer before transitioning to Activities here at West Abbey, where I have been for five years, and in my role as Activities Coordinator for two. I like being able to make a difference to the residents with my laugh and smile. I have 4 children, I am a scout leader (which takes up most of my weekends!), and enjoy going on hikes and camps both with the scouts and with my family.
Activities at West Abbey
Our Activities Coordinators are constantly striving to mentally and physically stimulate those we support by organising group and individual activities for anyone and everyone to participate in. There are regular outings in the minibus to nearby places of interest, as well as visits from the Donkey sanctuary, musicians and entertainers. We also host evenings such as our Cheese & Wine evenings and BBQ's in the summer, that we encourage relatives to come to. Activities are one of the most important aspects of a care home, so it is essential that our team are dedicated to ensuring that residents are entertained. We encourage our residents to participate in any way they can. We also encourage relatives to join with activities and events as often as they can to ensure that life at West Abbey is fun and active for all.
Life at West Abbey Care Home
Sixties Fashion Icon - Mary Quant
Residents took a virtual trip to the V&A Dundee for ‘Mary Quant Life and Times’ virtual talk today, it was an opportunity to take a journey back to the swinging sixties and the height of liberated fashion with the first major exhibition in 50 years of the seminal British designer’s work. The talk explored how her unique style developed from humble beginnings and went on to change the face of fashion forever.
Quant captured the spirit of the swinging sixties and pioneered a business model that reshaped the industry, making designer fashion far more accessible for women and men.
Following the talk residents enjoyed a lively discussion on their favourite 60's outfits and hemlines, laughing at how their families viewed some of the more daring outfits they wore!
Comic Relief Fundraising!
The team took part in a super hero fancy dress day alongside a cake sale to raise funds for the Comic Relief Charity on Friday 19th March. The residents enjoyed seeing the different styles of super hero costumes and red noses, we all had a day filled with fun packed activities and lots of laughter.
Most importantly we raised £82! Super team effort by staff and residents at West Abbey Care Home
Mother's Day at West Abbey
To celebrate Mothers Day our team arranged fresh flowers from our gardens for around home, the ladies of the home all received a beautiful handmade photo frame decorated by our activities team which brought happy smiles all round. Our chef Andy and his hospitality team prepared a special lunch menu of roast leg of lamb followed by a homemade strawberry cheesecake to mark the day with a choice of wine at the table, although we do offer this every day, and sherry as an aperitif!
Indoor visiting starts at West Abbey!
For residents at West Abbey the long awaited reunion with residents and a regular nominated family or friend became a reality from today, as visits have now been allowed to commence inside the home.
There has been much careful planning and preparation for this moment behind the scenes at Barchester Healthcare, who run West Abbey care centre since the announcement by Boris Johnson last month of lockdown restrictions being eased. Whilst some visiting continued in a specially designed visiting suite the Perspex screen divided relatives from their loved ones to keep residents safe, now meeting in the same room feels a great step towards normal visiting once again. Caroline Carter, General Manager, said: “This has been a much welcomed development in what have been very challenging times. The visits are safe and well organised, the visitor takes a Lateral Flow Covid Test and we ensure the result is negative before the visitor enters the home for the safety of all our residents and staff. Today was a lovely day to welcome in our first visitor and we will be welcoming more throughout the week."
Mr Loader, the first visitor today arrived with delighted smile, overjoyed to see his mother face to face he said: “Thank you for making it possible to see my mother, Joyce, I’m looking forward to holding her hand again very soon, you should all be very proud of what you have achieved during these challenging times”.
A whole new world of magic for residents at West Abbey
West Abbey has recently brought a bit of magic to residents by providing a new ‘Magic Table 360 and the Happiness Programme’ as a way to improve residents’ quality of life.
Designed and manufactured in the UK, the Magic Table 360 uses interactive games to connect residents with staff and with each other, and research shows it improves the wellbeing of people living with dementia. Using interactive light projections, the Magic Table 360, which can be played independently or in a group, stimulates movement by inviting participants to take part in all sorts of different fun activities such as popping bubbles, playing the piano, colouring in pictures, sweeping leaves or interacting playfully with fish. Games are rich in colour, movement and detail, and allow people of all ages to play in a safe and comfortable environment.
The Magic Table 360 is portable so it can be used wherever residents feel most comfortable, it can be projected onto the floor, ceiling, walls, a whiteboard or even the bed. The Happiness Programme allows for a range of games that change seasonally and have country-specific versions covering 14 different categories, so there will always be something new for residents to try.
We had flippin' fun on Pancake Day!
The staff and residents at West Abbey have been flipping and turning pancakes all morning in preparation for their annual Shrove Tuesday pancake flipping competition.
West Abbey has marked this year’s Pancake Day with a whole home pancake flipping competition, involving residents and staff and of course, lots of pancakes! Andy Pippard, chef at the home, flipped more than 100 pancakes, serving them up with sweet and savoury fillings for all the eager staff and residents.
He said: “My secret to the best pancakes is all in the whipping. Give it some elbow grease when mixing the batter and you’ll get perfect pancakes every time. I like experimenting with the fillings – the residents’ favourites are chocolate spread and banana and of course, good old fashioned lemon and sugar!”