We can’t do that ! …… Pushing the boundaries

Sue Atkinson, Island Care



Do our residents still want bingo, skittles, uninviting morning teas and boring guest speakers each week?

What if we involved circus acts, art based activities such as felt making, creating a real wine bar within the facility or serving high teas with fine bone china listening to a string quartet as well as live in artists in the secure ward?

This power point presentation is about the process of challenging staff to remove the boundaries, open that creative door and to think outside the square with future social care activities.

Using strategies such as taking staff from the three facilities off site to bi-monthly meetings so they had a chance to enjoy lunch together build friendships and work through issues they faced in their roles as social care staff. Creating a six month strategic plan that the staff had an input into. Engaging professionals to run workshops on subjects such as mapping the issues/challenges/concerns, synthesis and way forward, emphasising practical steps, managing volunteers to training workshop delivered by Alzheimer’s Australia Tasmania.

Engaging artists to run workshops giving the staff and volunteers the skills/knowledge to implement future activities.

Finding out what passion staff, volunteers and Residents have and helping them implement these.

The presentation will show a range of new activities in the last 12 months from F.A.D (Friday arvo dance) where once a month live music and high tea is on the agenda inviting local businesses to attend ; Residents project managing the establishment of a wine bar as well as taking on volunteer roles within the facility; string quartets and artists in residence in the dementia ward; theatre group which encourages community members to participate; circus activities; to engaging volunteers through the work for the dole scheme to help staff to create new art based projects.

Why the presentation/topic will be of interest to Conference participants

This presentation will be of interest to the Conference participants because it will show that allowing staff, volunteers and Residents explain their passions new directions can be formed giving ownership to each and everyone involved. That staff who in the beginning kept on saying ‘we can’t do that’ to now being excited about their role and totally engaged each day. The flow on effect for the Residents is now they have choices so if they don’t want to go to bingo Wednesday afternoon there are other activities on offer creating parallel sessions.


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