Throughout your life, you are exposed to many activities – some grab you and become lifelong passions, others; occasional pastimes. By the time you have made the decision to enter an aged care facility, you’ll most likely have quite a list of things you enjoy. To ensure everyone feels socially, physically, spiritually and emotionally fulfilled, every new resident at a Radius Care facility has a social and wellbeing care plan written.
This is formulated using personal information focusing on their past interests and life experiences and forms the basis of an Activity Plan to make their days interesting and meaningful. Residents and their families are encouraged to look at entering residential care as a new and fun chapter in their lives.
Each of the 22 facilities throughout New Zealand has its own culture and special brand of activities. For example, at Fulton, daily newspaper reading is hugely popular. Residents love keeping abreast of what is happening in their own community and around the world. Major events spur lively debate and discussions and there are many opportunities to get involved in the world – including participating in the four years of WW100 commemorations.
For those who enjoy the outdoors, van outings are a chance to physically reconnect with the surrounding town and country. It’s a simple pleasure to stop and enjoy an ice cream while watching a slice of beach life or children playing in a park, but one that many thrive on.
Bowls and other sport based activities bring out a healthy competitive streak among the residents too.
Not everyone wants to be part of a large group so it’s important for staff to allow individual time each day to pop into people’s rooms for a cup of tea and a chat, a spot of personal pampering or just to listen to their memories. Residents lead these one on one sessions and this can often lead to a new activity idea being introduced.
Music is a universal language and provides activities that most people choose to join in with, in various forms. A range of styles is offered; from old time to classical, country, rock and roll, contemporary and Dixie bands, they’re all welcomed and loved. Despite the level of care you require, music is easy to appreciate. Having a ‘house piano’ is an advantage as there are residents who like tinkling on the ivories, which often leads to an impromptu singalong.
For fans of games, Housie will always have its ardent fans.
Boutique style activities cater for a small group of like minds, such as regular music appreciation sessions, run by a music teacher. This attracts a small but passionate following of residents who want to dig beneath the surface of their favourite music.
Long-standing interests are important to foster and continue with – residents who belong to community groups are encouraged and assisted to continue to attend as long as they are able. Church services from different denominations are offered.
As well as continuing with life long interests, introducing new experiences is welcome and beneficial. Staff are thrilled to hear a 90 year old say, “now that was a first.” Fulton even runs a fortnightly radio show, broadcast live from Otago Access Radio, and all residents are encouraged to try it! Recently a group of residents went on a 30 minute flight in a 1943 DeHavilland Dominie aircraft. That was definitely a first for them!
Technology is a great tool for keeping connected – residents skype their peers in Australia, Japan and Hawaii to see how they live, and there is a group of residents called the Ragtimers (Resident Action Group) who organise and raise money for community groups.
There’s never a dull moment! Contact your closest Radius Care site for more information.