At Hallaton Manor, we understand the importance of music, environmental stimulation, pets, mealtimes, reminiscence, personal interaction, laughter and social history in sustaining quality of life. To this end, we have changed our focus from delivering activities around care, to delivering care around activities, recruiting extra staff to assist with the residents’ busy social lives.
In the garden and greenhouse residents plant and tend the hanging baskets and pots, and grow tomatoes and other vegetables that are used in the kitchen. There are several items of outdoor gym equipment in the grounds of the home; rowing machines, tai chi, ski walker, cycles etc. that residents use for fun and exercise.
The ‘Cluckability’ project started in 2013, aims to develop an interest in rearing rare breed chickens. With guidance and support, residents take responsibility for incubating eggs, cleaning and feeding the chickens and, ultimately, selling the chickens. The chickens are named by residents with dementia after their grandparents and are a constant source of entertainment and discussion.
Pets and animals are an important part of stimulating memories and emotions, so in addition to the hens, we have a pat dog that visits the home regularly and in the spring and summer, we keep Shetland ponies that the residents groom and feed and help to muck out the field. The ponies come inside the home to visit residents that are unable to go outside.
In the calm and tranquil Spa and Beauty Centre, we offer reflexology, aromatherapy and light therapy. The Centre has an ‘appointment’ hairdressing and manicure service and residents take responsibility for their appointment card, of great importance in maintaining dignity and self esteem. Treatments can be accompanied by music of the residents’ choice.
Residents can entertain guests in the café, listening to music of their choice on the jukebox, or join in the daily topical debate at coffee time. In the café, residents can help themselves to quality, decaffeinated tea, coffee or chilled fresh fruit juices at any time. They may choose from a menu of homemade, nutritious and imaginative meals and snacks, prepared using fresh produce and ingredients containing vitamins and minerals that can enhance cognitive function, reduce cholesterol and improve visual health.
The importance of music as a memory stimulant cannot be underestimated and our activities manager and staff organise karaoke and singalongs regularly, suitable for all ages. Music of the resident’s choice is played while they enjoy pampering sessions in the spa and each lounge has a CD player. There are frequent visiting entertainers, speakers and musicians who always receive a warm welcome.
The staff entertain visitors and residents with small shows, all costumes being home made in the craft room. Theme days such as Chinese New Year, American Independence Day, Hawaiian Day are always very entertaining and together with the shows, are the source of a lot of laughter. Residents look forward to Barbeques in the summer on the lawn.
Our annual ‘Brass on the Grass’ event is held in the summer and is well received by residents, their guests and visitors alike.
Quizzes, bingo, board games and card games take place daily and the activities manager and her staff do many one to one activities with residents, reading, singing and providing stimulation to less able.
There are many places of interest in the area and residents love to have a day out with a picnic or meal in a café or restaurant. Foxton Locks, Melton Market, Rutland Water, Uppingham and Garden Centres are favourite haunts, as is Hallaton village which has a café and two restaurant pubs, one of which has ducks and Shetland ponies.
Arts and Crafts
The home has a buzzing ‘Arts and Crafts’ department and a Garden room has recently been added to accommodate equipment and to provide an outside space for residents to work in. The residents make items such as candles, baskets and greetings cards which they sell at the Christmas fair and at open days. Knitting, painting and cake decoration are among the hobbies on offer.
The home has a good library of equipment to enable staff to assist their residents in reminiscence therapy. Memory boxes containing items such as old toys, old kitchen items, sensory items and picnic baskets can stimulate happy memories for some residents.
There are large print books in the library and some excellent picture books which assist with memory and we now have a collection of audio CDs.
The relaxed, yet lively environment enables residents, who come from all walks of life, to mix, form relationships and engage in activities that enhance their quality of life and develop new skills and interests. Within this community they can rediscover their self-esteem and peace of mind