What was the issue you were addressing or working on?
The Day Centre Service is a Voluntary Organisation which operates Day Centres for Older People in Kirkaldy, Kinghorn and Buntisland. It is run by Anne Smith and staff.
The main benefits of this project are that it is proactive in sustaining the individual’s independence. It offers people, who are limited in their abilities, the reassurance of socialising in a safe and supportive environment. The users learn new skills as well as maintaining skills they already have. Certain activities besides the therapeutic and social value they hold, also offer rehabilitation in the form of maintaining and enhancing motor skills for those dealing with the effects of strokes or arthritis.
What you did?
The project enables 140 frail older people who have a diverse range of physical issues. The project provides specialised transport, with a trained escort, to and from the centre. This allows the individual to meet up with their peers in a safe environment and to enable them to continue to be part of the community. This is very much a preventative service, staving off loneliness and isolation and is proactive in enabling people to stay in their own homes for longer before having to go into Residential Care.
The organisation also operates specialised Dementia groups (The Haven) These groups offer social and mental stimulation, activities and companionship for older people who have Dementia and are limited in their ability to access the community unaided.
Many friendships have been established as a result of attending the Day Centres. The project also addresses exclusion. The nature of Dementia in its later stages isolates the individual and their careers. Interacting on a very basic level becomes difficult.
These issues are addressed by providing 6 hours day care in a safe and stimulating environment. This maintains morale and determination for them and improves their quality of life, which prevents premature entry into residential care.
What were the outcomes - benefits or otherwise?
Betty Hutchinson, aged 83, was diagnosed with Dementia had been attending a Nursing Home within Fife where she would often come home very tearful, sad and often saying ‘she didn’t want to go back’! Due to the change fund allocation and the expansion of the Dementia part of the Centre, she was given a place at the Day Centre Services within Fife. Initially, Betty attended here one day a week but within no time, was asking if she could attend more days and soon managed to acquire a place 3 days a week.
Betty now says, her life is much better, the Centre is a ‘Braw place to be’, the food is great, has lots of activities to do, the staff are wonderful but above all, she feels happy and safe with lots of friends. If she didn’t come to the centre ‘she doesn’t know what she would do’!
Contacts - to find out more
Anne Smith, Day Service Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org