Loneliness Awareness Week

Loneliness Awareness Week

Loneliness Awareness Week was created three years ago by The Marmalade Trust to raise awareness of loneliness throughout the UK and to start talking about it.

This year the campaign focuses on reducing the stigma of loneliness and to promote #LetsTalkLoneliness

Many people will experience loneliness at some point in their lives. However it is known that older people are particularly vulnerable to loneliness and isolation which can have an effect on their health.

Avoiding loneliness in our homes has always been at the forefront of our work. Our staff create loving, social and active environments for everyone to take part in.

Parkland House have recently been accredited as an Eden Alternative home and joined the Eden Alternative UK Register.

The Eden Alternative is an American philosophy which compliments our vision for our homes. It is a person centred approach to care aimed to support residents play a full and active role in their community by challenging loneliness, helplessness and boredom.

We believe it helps us provide exceptional care and support from our team who are committed to promoting resident independence and well-being.

The Eden Alternative believes the solution to the three challenges are:

  • Loneliness: loving companionship, contact with people and animals in and out of the home.
  • Helplessness: create opportunities to give as well as receive care.
  • Boredom: Daily life full of variety and spontaneity.

Help raise awareness this week and get chatting about loneliness by tagging #LetsTalkLoneliness

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The Parkland Poets – Outstanding

The Parkland Poets – Outstanding

The Parkland Poets Lyn, Bekki and Rhianne have written another lovely poem to celebrate the Parkland House Outstanding rating from CQC.

Thank you very much for sharing with us and we would love for you to share with friends and family.

Outstanding by The Parkland Poets
National Growing for Wellbeing Week

National Growing for Wellbeing Week

This week we are celebrating National Growing for Wellbeing Week, which highlights the positive connection that growing your own produce can have on your physical and mental wellbeing.

Evidence shows the benefits of gardening can have improve mental and physical health, confidence, concentration, communication and is a great way of bringing others together.

Our homes each have a Gardening Club who help tend to the gardens, repotting plants, weeding and flower arranging. The clubs are always well attended with those that participate and those that just like to watch.  

Parkland House have recently established a herb and flower garden on the lounge terrace. Taking inspiration from the recent Eden Association Accreditation, Parkland wanted to create a more personal gardening space. This has allowed everyone to enjoy the outdoors and grow some of their favourite herbs and flowers. So far they have grown strawberries, lavender and sunflowers for their ‘dig a sunflower’ competition.

Parkland House Gardening Club re-potting the terrace plants

We know summer has arrived when the hedgehog planters start to appear in the Coppelia House gardens. Coppelia’s Gardening Club re-use plastic bottles to create effective hedgehog shape planters so they may grow herbs and flowers. They have also re-used milk cartons as planters to fill with their favourite flowers.

Coppelia House Gardening Club Hedgehog Planters

We look forward to sharing more of the homes Gardening Club projects.

#NationalGrowingforWellbeingWeek #growyourown

Parkland House recognised as Outstanding by CQC

Parkland House recognised as Outstanding by CQC

Congratulations to everyone at Parkland House Exeter, part of Peninsula Care Homes who have been recognised by regulator Care Quality Commission (CQC) as outstanding in four areas: – caring, responsive, effective and well-led. 

We join only 3.1% of England’s care homes who have an overall ‘outstanding’ rating.  The Parkland House team work so hard to provide the highest possible standard of care and we are so thrilled to be recognised for our work by the CQC, and to be rated ‘outstanding’ overall.

Peninsula Care Homes are delighted with the recognition of the hard work and continual journey of improvement Parkland House takes.

CQC inspected the home unannounced on March 4th and 7th and the report has just been published (soon to be available on the CQC website).  The report states that “people receive an outstanding, personalised, caring service.  People receive very kind and respectful support from staff who promoted their abilities, knew them well and genuinely enjoyed their company.”

Managing Director, Louise Arnold is thrilled with the outstanding rating and recognition of the caring and empathic care each member of staff contributes to the team led by Ann Boardman, Registered Manager. The comments within the report from residents, relatives, professional agencies are all high praise including “staff are very kind to mum…we can leave mum here and know she is alright”

Parkland House is a residential home for 52 specialising in caring for those living with a dementia.

National Walking Month

National Walking Month

May is #NationalWalkingMonth, when campaigners encourage individuals to try and walk more.  There are many suggestions: trying walking to school or work, add 20 minutes walking to your day.  People have so many different motivations for walking – it may be just the need to get outside, experience new surroundings or even just out of necessity.

Across our homes we have many keen walkers.  Irene loves to go for a fast pace walk, often taking a staff members dog with them.  They walk for miles but occasionally like to take the bus back up the hill to Parkland House.  There has been more walking at Bramble Down including trips to the local pub, and exploring the village.  Cornerways is lucky to be so close to Preston Sands, a beautiful stretch of beach dotted with beach huts. 

We hope that you enjoy some walking during May.  If you don’t fancy walking but want to read a good book about a couple walking I highly recommend The Salt Path by Raynor Winn.  Described as “An astonishing narrative of two people dragging themselves from the depths of despair along some of the most dramatic landscapes along the South West Coast Path, looking for a solution to their problems and ultimately finding themselves.”  Enjoy the book and walking!

Love Your Pet Day

Love Your Pet Day

Across our group we have a number of our own pets who are carefully looked after by our staff and residents.

We thought we’d introduce our pets to you. At Bramble Down we have “Bramble” the tortoise.

Coppelia House have their two resident budgies Fred and Freda. In the garden live their two guinea pigs Bertie and Barnaby. Residents also enjoy families visiting with their animals along with “Watson” the visiting Therapy Dog.

Cornerways look forward to Animal HQ who visit monthly with their guinea pigs, rabbits, dog and chinchilla.

In Parkland House we have Barney the guinea pig who enjoys hanging out in the admin office where they enjoy much fuss and attention from residents. The homes also welcomes Gus the “Pat-A-Dog” who visits regularly.

Plymbridge seem to have adopted a cat, Lilly. They also have Domino the rabbit and Hovis the Therapy Dog who visit regularly.

Pets and animals generally hold a special place in many people’s hearts and lives, and there is compelling evidence that interacting with pets can be beneficial to physical, social and emotional wellbeing of humans. Dr William Thomas who designed the Eden Alternative training believed that animals could lessen the sense of boredom and loneliness for those in care.

Many of our residents enjoy the various visiting animals, these include donkeys from The Donkey Sanctuary, Birds of Prey, Local Zoo’s and a Dartmoor Pony.

National Bird Feeding Month

National Bird Feeding Month

February is National Bird Feeding Month. It is a time to welcome back the birdsong and the early signs of Spring. As the February and March weather can be quite unpredictable, our homes have started to make simple bird feeders to hang in the gardens for our little friends. See our recipe for Bird cake below:

Make a speedy bird cake

Make this quick and easy cake to keep the birds happy!

You will need:

  • Good quality bird seed
  • Raisins
  • Peanuts
  • Grated cheese
  • Suet or lard
  • Yoghurt pots
  • String
  • Mixing bowl
  • Scissors

Important notes

Not suitable for people with nut allergies. Note that bird seed, including peanuts bought for birds, is not suitable for human consumption.

Step-by-step guide

  1. Carefully make a small hole in the bottom of a yoghurt pot. Thread string through the hole and tie a knot on the inside. Leave enough string so that you can tie the pot to a tree or your bird table.
  2. Allow the lard to warm up to room temperature, but don’t melt it. Then cut it up into small pieces and put it in the mixing bowl.
  3. Add the other ingredients to the bowl and mix them together with your finger tips. Keep adding the seed/raisin/cheese mixture and squidging it until the fat holds it all together.
  4. Fill your yoghurt pots with bird cake mixture and put them in the fridge to set for an hour or so.

Hang your speedy bird cakes from trees or your bird table. Watch for greenfinches, tits and possibly even great spotted woodpeckers.

Have fun bird watching!

Sepsis Awareness

Sepsis Awareness

Sepsis is the body’s overwhelming and life-threatening response to infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.  Medically, Sepsis is your body’s immune system overresponding to an infection.

In February last year, PCH’s Chairman David Arnold sadly passed away due to Sepsis.  On this first anniversary, we thought we’d share links to the Sepsis Trust to increase awareness.

The Sepsis Trust is working to saves lives and improve outcomes for survivors.  They raise public awareness, educate the public and support those affected by sepsis.

During our Devon Care Kitemark conference last year, Pippa Richards – Lead Nurse for sepsis at Musgrove Park Hospital shared a simple video which is available on YouTube, it’s worth a watch, taking only 5 minutes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGfC82UnOH8

The UK Sepsis Trust share sepsis screening and action tools for community nurses and care assistants. The tools are available to view in all our homes.

We already have had PCH staff rightly seek medical help for residents suspecting sepsis.  We hope that increased awareness “Just ask: Could it be Sepsis” will save others and help prevent death from sepsis.

If you would like to join the UK Sepsis Trust’s current campaign “Streets Against Sepsis” please visit their website:  https://sepsistrust.org We will be raising money for the UK Sepsis Trust during 2019 and will let you know further details in due course.

Parkland House validated as Eden Alternative Home

Parkland House validated as Eden Alternative Home

We are very excited to announce that Parkland House has been successfully accredited as an Eden Alternative home and will now join the Eden Alternative UK Register.

It was lovely to meet Helen from Eden Alternative on last week’s inspection and introduce her to Parkland residents, staff and families. We would like to thank the staff at Parkland House for their continuous hard work, love and support to the residents at Parkland House.

Helen from the Eden Alternative, “It was an absolute pleasure to visit Parkland’s on Thursday. It is a lovely home and I am delighted I was able to validate it as an Eden Home”.

The Eden Alternative is an American philosophy which compliments our vision for our homes. It focuses on changing the culture of care, from one where ageing is seen as a period of decline to one where individuals continue to grow.

It is a person centred approach to care aimed to support residents play a full and active role in their community by challenging loneliness, helplessness and boredom.

We believe it helps us provide exceptional care and support from our team who are committed to promoting resident independence and well-being.

The Eden Alternative believes the solution to the three plagues are:
Loneliness is loving companionship. Contact with people and animals in and out of the home.
Helplessness is to create opportunities to give as well as receive care.
Boredom. Daily life full of variety and spontaneity.  Our homes to provide an environment where unexpected and unpredictable interactions and happenings take place.

We hope that you will support us to ensure residents live the best life possible whilst at Parkland House. We look forward to receiving the certificate of validation and Eden Tree plaque to share with the residents and staff.

New Year, New Career?

New Year, New Career?

Recruitment in the care sector is at an all-time low, this is a particular challenge for Peninsula Care Homes due to the remote location of some of our Devon based Homes.

We want to allay the rumours that the general public have about careers in care and promote the roles, ‘working in care is immensely fun, sometimes challenging, but always rewarding and enjoyable!’

At Peninsula we believe that every one of our staff plays a key role in providing outstanding care. We want our staff to perform to their best.  Staff are genuinely kind and compassionate and often go the extra mile to provide residents with excellent, high quality care.  We support residents based on their individual needs and strive to maintain the best possible quality of life in a home from home environment.

We find out as much as possible about each of our residents; who would have known that John has visited twelve Countries, Margaret has met the Queen three times and that Cyril was a mountaineer… residents relish the opportunity to share stories and staff love listening to them.

If you are a tactile person, many of our residents still enjoy human touch, cuddles, kisses and hand holding are free of charge and can change the way someone is feeling in an instance.

In return we provide a wide range of training delivered in-house or using outside providers, senior staff are encouraged to mentor junior staff and all our managers have an open door policy.  Staff attend seminars and conferences based around the ever changing culture in care.  Staff recently experienced the Virtual Dementia Tour, which provided an excellent insight into what living with dementia may be like.

It is possible to have a career in care, we have had staff commence as Carers, progress to Senior Carers, Team Leaders and eventually become Registered Managers.  Other roles include our Activity Co-ordinators who provide entertainment for physical and mental stimulation as well as general well-being.  Residents often rekindle hobbies and interests that they may not have done for 50 years…  Our Cooks prepare good quality home cooked food and are encouraged to interact with residents to find out the likes and dislikes.  Domestic and laundry teams have a huge part to play, chatting to residents as they go about their daily routines. Admin staff, maintenance staff, kitchen assistants to name a few.

Working hours are flexible too, you can do a 6 hour or 12 hour shift, therefore you could work three 12 hour shifts and have a four day weekend!

In summing up, our residents are never lonely and neither are our staff.  If you have ever thought about a career in care, what’s stopping you?

Contact us today via Facebook, Twitter, http://www.peninsulacarehomes.co.uk or email enquiries@peninsulacarehomes.co.uk. We look forward to hearing from you!