Loneliness is something many of us experience at some point in our life but one in three adults in later life are affected by loneliness, so it goes without saying that this is a real problem affecting communities across the country.
Bereavement, living alone and reduced mobility can all make these feelings worse for older people. Add to that the extra burden of cold, ice and snow, and winter can be a very difficult time for older people and their families.
“The best thing I could have done”
Across our care homes in England and Scotland older people choose to join us as much for the company as for the quality of care we provide. When a person moves into a Care UK home they are welcomed into a warm, family atmosphere where they have a wide choice of activities, entertainment and outings to enjoy, and where new friendships form quickly. Even residents who join us for a short respite stay tell us they keep in touch with the friends they make.
Mary, a resident of Chandler Court in Bromsgrove, says: “I knew as soon as I walked in, I could be happy here. It was the best thing I could have done. I’ve made a whole new circle of friends.”
Another resident, Cynthia, agrees: “I really enjoy the outings, but it’s all the new friends who have made the difference for me.” (Link to a video TBC)
The most wonderful time of the year
Our homes offer a full programme of activities whatever the season, but things always ramp up at this time of year. Homes go all-out with the decorations and garden lighting – even creating Santa’s grottos – and will host carol singers, school nativity plays and colleague pantos. It’s not unusual for Santa and his reindeer to visit, and there are outings to see Christmas lights, visit festive markets, and attend carol services. Our chef-led kitchen teams also pride themselves on creating mouth-watering menus to tempt and delight every appetite.
Your local home from home
For those older people still living independently in their own homes, our care homes offer an important social hub in a variety of creative ways. If you haven’t discovered these yet, then winter is a great time to get started.
Our Suffolk homes, and a number of other Care UK homes nationally, provide day clubs where local older people can get together for anything from a couple of hours to a day to do activities, socialise and enjoy a good meal.
Other homes open their doors for monthly or weekly friendship and/or dementia café sessions, film clubs, knit ‘n’ natter groups, meals and more.
For example, Winchcombe Place in Newbury opens its hair salon and cinema for local older people, and Scarlet House in Stroud offers taster afternoons for anyone interested in finding out more about the home. The home also hosts monthly ‘ladies who lunch’ and ‘gentlemen’s lunch club’ events as well as a cinema and café afternoons.
At Ferndown Manor in Dorset, the home team provides a monthly ‘Come dine with us’ afternoon, where local older people can go along to enjoy the home’s award-winning food, plus activities, entertainment and a chance to make new friends.
Come and see us
If you and your loved one would benefit from a change of scene and a chance to chat to like-minded people and make new friends this winter, pop into your local Care UK home. Take a look at their website to find out about their regular community activities or visit their facebook page and what they’re planning over the festive season. You can find your nearest home by searching on our homepage. We look forward to meeting you.