The Mede is more than just a holiday home it offers day care facilities to benefit both the carer and cared for. Ensuring every person with dementia and their carer has an opportunity to have a break with support and respite in place to enhance their lives. The Mede is a 3 bedroom self-catering holiday bungalow for clients with dementia and their carer’s and families. It is located in Topsham, near Exeter, Devon, situated on the edge of the beautiful Exe Estuary. It sleeps 5 people and has a wet room. The bungalow has been equipped to the highest standard for a couple or family to stay for a holiday or short break, with easy access for those with limited mobility. Carers can be organised for helping with personal care and/or a sit-in service. Meals can be arranged upon request. Seaward House @ The Mede is a day facility caring for clients with dementia located next door to The Mede, running day-time activities for people with dementia but also available for those staying at The Mede.
- 10 February 2015
- South West
- Care, Recreation, Other
- Local Alliances:
- Exeter Dementia Action Alliance (EDAA)
1. Action Plan
1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?
We run CST days for people with mild to moderate dementia using the principles of Cognitive stimulation therapy. Our groups are 6-8 people from 10-4 daily with an Occupational Therapist and team of volunteers. Our staff have an understanding of common symptoms of dementia and their impact on communication, perception and relationships. Useful Communication Techniques and positive and enabling activities and how to support someone to live well with dementia. We also look at the clinical evidence behind the CST structure and topics within the therapy course, the principles of cognitive stimulation therapy and group facilitation skills and group planning
Occupational therapists are health and social care professionals who enable people to live life their way – helping people to keep up their every day activities and remain independent for as long as possible after they develop dementia.
It is important to have someone on the team who has such a wealth of knowledge about the larger health and social care team and can then direct carers to other services or provide advice that's needed. Carers get an opportunity at the beginning and the end of each session to ask questions that might be troubling them.
We are hoping to start a carers group one day a month to support carers in their caring role.
2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?
We intend to provide a friendly, caring and stimulating atmosphere where clients are listened to and feel valued, their rights are upheld, their cultural and religious beliefs are respected and participation in our days at Seaward House is a positive and beneficial experience. Clients are enabled and supported to lead full and purposeful lives and realise their ability and potential. The uniqueness and intrinsic value of each client is acknowledged and each person is treated with respect. Clients have as much control as possible over their lives whilst being protected against unreasonable risks. The individual and human rights of clients are safeguarded and actively promoted within the context of services delivered. Clients are treated equally, their background and culture are valued, and services provided fit within a framework of equal opportunities and anti-discriminatory practice. Clients are offered, wherever possible, the opportunity to select independently from a range of options.
Clients have a legal right to determine what happens to them and their informed, genuine and valid consent to the care and support they receive is essential. They should feel as safe as possible in all aspects of their care and support, and are free from abuse, exploitation or neglect. Carers know that information about them and cared for is managed appropriately and everyone involved in and with the day care setting respects confidential matters. When these values are fully integrated into all aspects of planning, delivery and review of services, and the minimum standards are being met, the day care setting will be a resource that delivers the best possible outcomes for its clients at Seaward House.
Making a difference
Seaward @ The Mede was created to provide a day care facility for the local community from 10am-4pm. Residents of The Mede can visit Seaward for respite day-care so that family members can take time visiting Devon and the local area. Often people living with dementia seldom leave their own homes, this can lead to them feeling isolated and lonely – it also provides their carer with a much needed day off.
Although there is no cure for memory loss, deterioration can be slowed down through the use of trusted methods. Activity sessions @ Seaward include stimulation exercises – memory – such as word and number games, current affairs and creative sessions. There is a lack of facilities for people when they first learn they have dementia – which is exactly the time that activity and stimulation is required. Activity days allow people to meet others in the same position which gives reassurance and mutual support.
The sessions are based on the principles of Cognitive Stimulation Therapy – an alternative to medication. It’s simple effective and good fun. Its evidence based and recommended by NICE.
How we deliver
Seaward House can offer emotional support, companionship and practical advice to people, including individuals with dementia and their carers who wish to live well independently in the community.
We are there to listen and provide support to those who come along, as well as to encourage people to make friends and take part in activities that interest them. Its aim is to support people to live well with dementia and people who have come into The Mede have been grateful to have someone listen to them and understand what they are going through and how they are feeling. The overall aim is to provide a friendly, relaxed and nonthreatening atmosphere.
- No testing - stimulate discussion using opinions and feelings
- Using reality orientation subtly and sensitively
- Consistently run – helping to orientate and create a familiar environment
- Getting to know members and provide activities that are suitable and important
- Focusing on strengths rather than limitations – all are encouraged to keep a hand in everyday tasks as well as trying something new
- Full of fun – members enjoy their time with us and help feel stimulated and supported and have a good time
Challenges to overcome
The Mede offers a holiday home with support works as it attracts repeat visitors and the testimonials from visitors are very supporting. Carers demand more respite and activities for their loved ones.
The future vision is to offer activities to local people, people on low income and retired couples.
Carers are concerned about the future. They are unsure what funds are required for the future, e.g., care home fees. They are therefore reluctant to look at activities that are beneficial. Sometimes it is easier to do nothing. The task of caring with someone with dementia is hugely challenging and most carers suffer with their own health as a result of their caring role.
How to support the carers of people living with dementia is a key aspect of the dementia strategy and future vision by:
- Creating more activities
- Reaching more people by providing more of a service