How a Littlehampton care home is making life as normal as possible for its residents during lockdown
A Littlehampton care home is going to heroic lengths to make life as normal as possible for its residents during lockdown.
Oakland Grange in St Floras Road is hosting a variety of activities to keep residents’ spirits up while they are forced to isolate without visitors during the pandemic. Activities include cake making, flower arranging, bingo, seated exercises and walks around the garden. The home, which cares for up to 42 older people with a range of health care needs, including people living with dementia, also has an in-house hair salon. While an external hairdresser usually visits, staff have stepped in to make sure residents continue to feel and look amazing. Naomi Roberts, registered care manager, said: “Since the home went into lockdown all of our amazing staff have pulled together to make life as normal as possible for our wonderful residents. Between us all we have been managing the activities and keeping all of our residents occupied and entertained. I have a pet snake – Cyril – which I brought into the home for all the residents to meet. I thought this would be something different and surprisingly all the residents loved him with no-one being afraid. Every Monday, an external lady usually visits and carries out seated exercises, but since the lockdown I have taken over and have added some fun games. We have an amazing activities assistant – Alicia Gatland – who is here every day entertaining our residents and we have a senior care assistant – Robin Cheshire – who has been excellent at entertaining our residents with our very own virtual reality headsets, taking our residents all around the world. Robin also set up the TV with a driving controller so that our residents could race cars and compete against each other.” Naomi said residents have received several letters and pictures from local schools and children while in lockdown, adding: “One of the residents has replied and they have become pen pals.” She said some residents in the home have celebrated birthdays without family and friends, but staff have worked hard to make them feel special. She added: “We intend to throw a big garden party for all residents and relatives when this is over so that we can all get together again and make sure our residents spend quality and happy times with their relatives and friends who they would not have seen for many weeks. I would like to say a very special thank you to all the staff at Oakland Grange who are working so hard to ensure all of our residents are safe and happy, they are doing an amazing job.”