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Creative routine crucial for elderly

Two friendly bobbies helping move the Abbeyfield House new oven on to the trailer. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

KAREN COLTMAN
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To inject some fun into the lockdown for staff and 40 Roseneath Lifecare and Village residents, the facility has held a wacky hair day and a pyjama fun day.

Many Wairarapa retirement villages are increasing diversional therapy activities.

Covid-19 means Roseneath residents can’t go out. They also receive no visitors.

Before the lockdown, residents were offered an outing at least once a week and the loss of routine has led to staff being creative to “keep the morale up and the day lively”, manager Gena Mikaera-Hurd said.

She said some people were at an age where comprehending the repercussions of covid-19 was not easy for them.

Diversional therapist Anne Wilson is keeping residents in touch with their friends and family on Skype, email, and phone calls, and said this was working well.

Lansdowne Park Village manager Karen Scott has all her staff working and four diversional therapy staff.

She said there was a big walking circuit at Lansdowne Park but with the Lansdowne Golf Course closed, her fit residents were missing their golf.

Lyndale rest home manager Mary Leighton said she had an “amazing team” and a great walking circuit and courtyard on the grounds at the homestead dementia unit.

At the main residential home on Cole St, Leighton has brought in more staff to develop activities.

“The hairdressers aren’t coming in, so staff are creating fancy hairdos and putting the ladies’ hair in rollers,” Leighton said.

She said she has felt very well supported by the Wairarapa District Health Board team.

Abbeyfield House manager Jude Clark said all is well for her residents, but they were close to having no stove for a month as the oven blew up the day before total lockdown.

“I went and bought the last stove in Noel Leeming and two police officers helped me get the oven on to the trailer,” Clark said.

“They are our neighbours at Abbeyfield so that was a neat gesture.”

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