Sage New Force in Advocacy

It is with great happiness that we can say there are improvements in care of the elderly with the introduction of SAGE the national advocacy with a mission "To promote and protect the rights, freedoms and dignity of older people by developing support and advocacy services wherever ageing poses a challenge for individuals." SAGE has a truly important and challenging job ahead. We wish Mervyn and his team the very best

Bealtaine May 2013

May belongs to the Bealtaine festival, celebrating creativity in older age! Thousands of older people now take part in the Bealtaine festival, with 2011 being its 16th year. Bealtaine showcases the talents and creativity of both first-time and professional older artists.

It is a chance for people to try new and challenging work, a chance to communicate traditions between the generations.

The theme for 2013 is ‘Grow Happy' a call to celebrate growth, spring and positivity for ourselves and communities.

The Elderwell team has been organising and implementing the Bealtaine festival for residential homes in the Cork/st1:place> area for 12 years! Currently we are organising a Bealtaine activity for 9 care facilities, and hope to include all residents of the homes in at least one aspect of the festivities.

We have developed both a creative and inclusive aspects to the festival. This year in keeping with the theme “Grow Happy” we have decided to build and develop a garden village. Model houses and streets surrounded by a selection of plants both flowering and edible allow the outdoor raised beds to grow bring us back to our roots and homes of our youth.

Our clients know their plants and have great ideas to make each building road and 'hedgegrow' a place to be both proud and happy with. So bring you green fingers along and dig in so we can grow happy together.   

The coming together of both the younger and older generations in the second part of our celebrations is comparable to the handing down of knowledge from span style="color: #FF0000">oone generation gardeners to another. With music, stories, food and fun mixing the students from the local schools, local talent graciously giving of their time, the residents and their families we can reaffirm the ties to the land that we have as a nation and appreciate how our past was rooted by the elderly and grow as a nation by the younger generations.

The Elderwell team ask you to really “Grow Happy” this May and join in, in the Bealtaine festival and help celebrate the older people of the community./span>

Bealtaine May 2011 /span>

May belongs to the Bealtaine festival, celebrating creativity in older age! Thousands of older people now take part in the Bealtaine festival, with 2011 being its 16th year. Bealtaine showcases the talents and creativity of both first-time and professional older artists.

It is a chance for people to try new and challenging work, a chance to communicate traditions between the generations.

The theme for 2011 is ‘Push the Boat Out , whatever the sea'  is taken from the poem 'At Eighty' by Scottish poet Edwin Morgan, OBE.

The Elderwell team has been organising and implementing the Bealtaine festival for residential homes in the Cork/st1:place> area for 12 years! Currently we are organising a Bealtaine activity for many care facilities, and hope to include all residents of the homes in at least one aspect of the festivities.

We have developed both a creative and inclusive aspects to the festival. This year in keeping with the theme “Pushing the boat out” we have decided to explore a sea side experience. A collage of seaside memories from the past will be captured in a Fishermans’ net that is being created by the imagination and recollections of the residents, giving us the opportunity to experience the boat load of memories and experiences salvaged from the past, experiences like seaside excursions, emigration journeys and working relationships with the sea.

The elderly are a veritable treasure chest of information and probably the greatest link to our recent history and culture. The recounting of their memories is as regaling as any tale from the sea and filled to the gunnels with history, intrigue, romance, sorrow and excitement.  

The coming together of both the younger and older generations in the second part of our celebrations is comparable to the handing down of knowledge from one generation of sea farers to another. With music, stories, food and fun mixing the students from the local schools, local talent graciously giving of their time, the residents and their families we can reaffirm the ties to the sea that we have as a nation and appreciate how our past was anchored by the elderly and kept afloat by the younger generations.

The Elderwell team ask you to really “Push the Boat” out this May and join in, in the Bealtaine festival and help celebrate the older people of the community./span>

 

Residents Committees

The residents committee is an important ocasion that allows the residents to take control of “their homes” and gives them a voice to highlight their concerns and a vehicle to allow improvements be made for them.

 A recreation session is an ideal time to implement the residents committee. Residents feel safe and relaxed in the familiar recreation setting.  In our experience, this provides the perfect opportunity to run and document resident’s comments, worries, appreciations and problems.

 Although the idea of the residents reporting problems may be seen with suspicion by those who are accustomed to this practice. The idea must be fostered and encouraged as a fantastic opportunity for residents to suggest improvements, give praise, and feel as equals in their care.

 Many of the changes that have been suggested during residents committees are things that are small and easy to implement but have been shown to be of great relief and a source of huge empowerment to the residents.

A few examples of the things that affect residents lives, that have been brought to our attention at residents committees are;

  • The trolley wheel squeaking  day and night and needs attention as it wakes residents.

  • No tomato ketchup on the tables at dinner time.

  • Clock battery on wall has run down.

  • Alarms too high for wheelchair users in the day room, as no strings attached to alarm

  • Residents would like a chance to talk with a priest in private

  • Some residents can’t see the television from their beds.

The list goes on but all these example issues were easily resolved by those in charge of the homes. In fact most of them are just oversights that were easily corrected when pointed out.

We at Elderwell feel we are perfectly positioned to chair the resident committee. We know the residents from a recreational and social setting, the residents know us well as we know them. We are not seen as staff by the residents and so residents have confidence that complaints will be heard. We stress confidentiality to the residents and this we hold very seriously. All issues discussed in the residents committee are written down verbatim and delivered to the matron/person in charge of care in the home.  

To work effectively a residents committee must have several integral component parts:

            Be held regularly. A once off meeting is not enough for residents to see changes being implemented. As change occurs confidence in the system improves.

             Be impartial. No ideas, suggestions or complaints are too trivial or too large for the committee. Facilitators have no opinion on the validity of a complaint we are there to report problems not solve them.

            Be taken seriously. Both by the facilitators and the residents present at the meeting and also the person in charge that receives the report. Their action or inaction carries the residents committee forward to success or not.

            Confidential. Probably the most important of all attributes is the idea of any comments made are confidential. Safety of the residents viewpoint and their confidence to speak without fear of reprisal is the most important principle that makes the residents committee a success.






© Elderwell 2014 Developed by Stephen Lucey