Month: February 2019

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.

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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.