Alive's relationship with Wessex Care
Alive's relationship with Wessex Care goes right back to the very early days of the charity's work, so it was hugely gratifying when we were asked to deliver our activity and engagement coaching program across all five of the Wessex homes.
The program was designed to empower staff to engage with residents in meaningful and creative ways at every opportunity and the Wessex teams certainly rose to meet the challenge.
Although the five homes all face unique challenges in providing care for their residents, it soon became apparent that there were similar approaches which could be adopted across the board, one of which was the use of iPads as a tool for connecting with the lives and interests of those they support.
During the coaching we demonstrated how a variety of apps could be used in this way - from a resident led 'World Tour' using Google Earth on an iPad linked to the TV, to a music and dance session using 'Launchpad' (this was a particular favourite of mine and very much a spontaneous happening!)
Although this technology has rapidly become a part of daily life for most of us, many older people can still find it quite daunting so it was beautiful to see how the Wessex teams approached this with sensitivity and enthusiasm, inviting residents to try things out in a playfully inclusive way and, generally to great effect, even when their own lack of experience with the kit took them out of their own comfort zones.
The management team at Wessex have since invested in IPads for all of their homes to enable the staff to deepen this aspect of the work, who knows where this might take them...