We have our specialist dementia care house, but we have residents who are starting to show signs of dementia on our nursing houses too. Staff are trained to look out for these signs and support residents who have not been diagnosed. It’s about providing person-centred care. When someone living with dementia begins their journey you have to be prepared to let them go and not pull them back. You need to be brave and let them live in their moment and be there for them.
It’s also about being part of their family. We provide help and support to the residents’ loved ones too. I like meeting them and getting involved. We develop a bond with the resident, and that will extend to the resident’s family.
When it comes to staff you have to be a caring person, and passionate. You have to live it and breathe it, you have to have a heart. We have a buddy system for new starters where they shadow a more experienced member of staff and learn how we provide our care here, how we talk to residents, about DCM and the culture change. We want the right person and it can be overwhelming coming into a Home that’s ‘Outstanding’.
My job is brilliant, and I enjoy all aspects of it. I’m always joining in activities and love dancing with residents. I’m trying to make a difference by helping them do what they want to do. You need to understand how you can support that person. At the end of the day it’s their home and we want them to feel happy, comfortable, loved and settled.
I love what I do.