Suffolk care home resident, Ron Turton, is celebrating after being shortlisted for Best Resident Contribution at the National Dementia Care Awards, thanks to his impressive contribution to the happiness and wellbeing of other residents, and the care team.
Ron, aged 69, a resident at Cleves Place care home in Haverhill, has been shortlisted for the regional accolade in the annual awards. The awards recognise the very best in dementia care across the sector, culminating in an awards ceremony taking place on Thursday 3rd November.
Ron, who is living with dementia, moved to Cleves Place in March 2016. When he first joined the care home he often struggled to settle and found it difficult to sleep, commenting he was ‘bored and needed something to do’. Although he was not keen to take part in the planned activities, Ron soon started keeping busy by helping the care team with everyday odd jobs around the home.
Ron volunteered in a local YMCA shop prior to moving to Cleves Place and when the team discovered this, they organised for him to return to his position. Ron jumped at the chance to get out and about in the local community again and thrived in this role.
The team also organised for Ron to work with the maintenance team, which has now become his ‘full-time job’. He took to the work quickly and helped other residents to personalise their bedrooms, including painting walls and hanging pictures. An additional support to the existing two-man team, Ron was presented with his own matching work shirt and the three of them are now referred to within the home as the ‘three musketeers’.
Sharlene Van Tonder, home manager at Cleves Place, said: “We are so pleased that the wonderful contribution Ron makes to Cleves Place has been recognised. The change in Ron since he took on the volunteer role and joined the maintenance team has been incredible, he has become much calmer and more settled, he enjoys getting in from ‘work’, relaxing in the lounge with a glass of port in the evening and sleeps soundly all night. The improvement in his wellbeing is clear to everyone and his new sense of purpose has allowed his personality to shine through.
“Ron’s happiness is proof that our activity based care approach works, finding a role for him was the best thing we ever did. Not only has Ron come out of his shell, his continued happiness has bolstered the team’s morale as they see the difference they have made to his life.”
Ron said: “I now have a purpose in life. I feel needed and trusted, and don’t feel lost anymore. I can’t believe I could get an award for doing what I love.”