Unveiling the Joy of Animal Therapy for Dementia Care

Here at the Huntington and Langham Estate we are always on the lookout for ways to bring joy, comfort, and moments of connection to those we support and one extraordinary avenue that has proven to be a beacon of light is animal therapy, often known as pet therapy.

We find it is a profound way to bring smiles and meaningful moments of peace to individuals living with dementia, all of contributes to our unique approach to providing specialist dementia care..

The magic of animal therapy lies in the beautiful connections it fosters and witnessing the transformative power animals can have in the lives of those struggling with dementia.  The gentle presence of animals wandering freely around the lounges of Langham Court has provided comfort, evoked memories, and stimulated emotional responses, that might otherwise not be experienced by some.

Dogs are often the stars in the world of animal therapy due to their innate ability to offer companionship and love unconditionally. Their playful energy and affection can brighten the darkest of days. Cats, with their soothing purrs and calming presence, also weave their magic in the lives of those battling dementia and are regular visitors to the Estate.

Welcome Mr Kipling

But let’s talk about a less conventional yet equally impactful therapy animal – the donkey. Yes, you read that right! Donkeys, with their serene demeanour and endearing nature, are gradually making their mark in the realm of animal-assisted therapy. Their calm and friendly disposition can work wonders in soothing individuals with dementia.

So imagine the joy that the arrival of Mr Kipling to the Estate had!

Pet therapy

As he wandered along the corridor into the lounge, those in the room beamed with smiles of surprise at their new visitor. With his soft, velvety nose, gently nudging peoples hands, it was evident that the experience triggered memories and emotions for some, evoking smiles and sparking conversations for others.

The tactile experience of petting a donkey’s soft fur can be immensely therapeutic in creating meaningful moments for those living with dementia.  By encouraging sensory stimulation and often prompting a flash of reminiscences of childhood days spent in the countryside, Christmas nativity plays or pet ponies, bringing forth tales of farm life or simply the delight of being close to such a gentle creature.

Welcome to Mr Kipling

Animal therapy with donkeys, or any other animal for that matter, isn’t just about the immediate joy it brings. Scientifically, it’s been proven that interacting with animals can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. It also stimulates social interaction and improves overall emotional well-being, crucial for those navigating the challenges of dementia.

So, if you’re caring for someone living with dementia, don’t underestimate the power of animal therapy. Whether it’s a wagging tail, a gentle purr, or the heartwarming presence of a donkey, these incredible creatures have the ability to touch the hearts and souls of those in need of a little extra love and comfort.

60’s day at Langham Court

The Summer of 23!

Music is such an important part of creating meaningful moments for those living with dementia and the 60’s is a favourite era for many of our residents in Langham Court.

So always game for dressing up, the team dug out their headbands and floral tops for a day filled with 60’s tunes and fun, bringing back lots of memories of days gone by.

Music vibes

We also used the day to introduce our new music walls, utilising some of the vinyl’s which were kindly donated following last month’s newsletter – Thank you!

A clever idea was to add a coloured buzzers to the walls by the records, which when pressed play a favourite track. They are already attracting a lot of plays, as people pass by and the occasional singalong!

60's day at Langham Court

More information about our approach to Dementia care and the Butterfly Approach  

A flying visit from Berkshire Birds of Prey

What a day we had!

The team from Berkshire Birds of Pray joined us here at the Huntington & Langham Estate, to provide a flying display from a selection of owls, falcons and hawks.

Birds of prey display

We all joined them outside on the courtyard and were delighted to be able to handle some of these wonderful birds and see them up close.  They were very friendly and interactive and used to being with strangers, taking an aerial view of the Estate as they flew between us.

Charlie Hoare MD “It was heartwarming to see so many families enjoying time together at The Huntington & Langham Estate for the bird of prey display. The time when so many care homes were closed to visitors altogether due to COVID-19 still lurking in the back of people’s minds, not to mention the recent talk of a new variant, there was a defiant buzz at this event that seemed more akin to a village fete than an activity in a care home.

The birds of prey were indeed impressive; agile hawks, tiny baby owls and plenty in between. However, the most memorable moments of the day came from the interactions between family and friends; a daughter taking a selfie with their mother and an owl and laughing over it together, a shy grandchild being encouraged to hold a hawk almost as big as them, and a member of staff stroking the soft wings of a bird being held by a resident.

How well attended it was highlighted just how inclusive care homes can be. Perhaps care homes should be judged not by what they offer to their residents alone, but what they provide for whole families.”

How our care goes beyond just being Dementia friendly

Here at the Huntington & Langham Estate, we offer the very highest level of thoughtful and personalised care for people living with all types of Dementia

Our sterling reputation has been established over many years, and we’re now privileged to welcome people to our family who have been referred from the NHS and from other homes who can no longer support their specialist needs.

Amongst our residents, we care for people who have rare forms of dementia, as well as those whose symptoms have progressed and who are not able to stay in their existing residential homes without heavy medication.

What is dementia?

The word ‘dementia’ describes a group of symptoms caused by different diseases that damage the nerve cells in the brain. The symptoms worsen over time and can affect memory, problem-solving, language and behaviour.

As dementia is caused by different diseases, there are different types of dementia. The most common is Alzheimer’s disease, followed by Vascular Dementia, Dementia with Lewy bodies and Frontotemporal dementia, sometimes called Pick’s disease.

Less well known are the seven rarer types of dementia, including PDA, PPA and FAD, all of which can occur at a younger age, can be wrongly diagnosed and can lead to issues accessing support from the usual existing health, social and voluntary services.

Between 5% and 15% of people living with dementia have been diagnosed with a rare, inherited or young- onset dementia.

We’re invested in learning more about dementia 

Recently, all our staff have undergone training by the Rare Dementia Support Society.

Dementia care training

We learned about all the rarer forms of dementia and how they affect people. This is vital as sometimes, when there’s a decline in cognition, we don’t know the type of dementia a person may have, especially if they can no longer have an MRI.

Now, with our staff’s insight, we can work backwards from behaviour and symptoms to diagnosis, meaning residents get the specialist care, understanding and flexibility they need.

Visit us, and you’ll quickly see that our informed and adaptable approach means we can be a home for anyone with any form of dementia.  For example, we’ve welcomed people of a young age living with YOAD dementia who have school-age families, so their needs are very different to those in their 70s+.

At our Estate, the care your loved one will receive is often beyond that found elsewhere.

We go beyond “dementia friendly”

The care we provide is very personalised, thoughtful and caring. We see how people behave and react and adapt our approach or environment to them rather than expecting them to conform to our rules.

We know that people living with rare dementia can present in different ways, and this means we can offer personalised care.  For example, one resident came to us with dementia and wanted to stay in his room over mealtimes. His dementia was not far progressed, and he was very independent, but he struggled with breakfast and lunchtime in this space.

Having learned about the symptoms associated with PCP dementia – a rare form of dementia where there’s a sensitivity to light – we gave him a pair of sunglasses, and he was happy to eat and socialise in the dining room.  He might have been labelled as “not sociable” in another home and left to eat in his room.

Personal Caring

We’re all part of a community 

At the Langham Estate, we’re part of a community. There’s no delineation between people living with us and working with us. There’s no Us and Them. We encourage residents to contribute to the life of the home however they can. Some like laying the table for a meal. Others like caring for our carers by, for example, brushing and styling their hair.

We know all our residents have value and want to feel in control. In our flexible and timetable-free environment, that means people can feel freer, and, in turn, this means that challenging behaviour is kept to a bare minimum.

Here’s a story which exemplifies our attitude to positive risk:

A resident with dementia who had previously escaped from two other care homes told us he wanted to find weak spots in our security at Langham Court and explore the surroundings. Instead of scolding him, we allowed him to act out his plans, safe in the knowledge that he couldn’t come to any harm on our large Estate.

Everyone finds their sense of purpose in different ways, and his was to find a way out – and we did not want to deprive him of this. It is a matter of balancing wellbeing and illbeing; a risk assessment of sorts, evaluating the likelihood and severity of potential outcomes of either allowing or disallowing a certain activity.

Over many weeks, he tried various escape plans, occasionally being allowed to succeed. We always found him and brought him back. Surprisingly, he was always happy to return in the knowledge that he had achieved with what he had set out to do.

 

Langham Court Terrace

How did we manage this? Well, to preserve his pride and independence, we discreetly hid a GPS tracker into his jacket and shoes. This allowed us to keep an eye on him without damaging his sense of self. By finding this balance between safety and his desire for adventure, we ensured his wellbeing while respecting his autonomy.

Our unique approach is beloved by residents and their families 

Caring for a loved one with dementia can be rewarding and draining. You might want them to move to a residential home but feel guilty about how this will impact them and you.

In these cases, we often recommend bringing your loved one for a respite stay – a short break for them and you. You can relax knowing they are lovingly supported by genuinely caring people. This can also make it easier for you and your loved one if there’s a move to full-time residential care in the future.

At the Huntington & Langham Estate, we provide luxury care across our two specialist care homes.

Family-owned and run, we offer dignified, compassionate and personalised care to our residents, giving them the nurturing support they need to continue living full, independent and meaningful lives.

We are Butterfly and Dragonfly accredited. To arrange a visit to the Estate and tour our homes and grounds, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.  

Take a stroll down memory lane at Langham Court

We are so proud of the dementia-friendly living experience we have created thanks to the strong philosophy behind our care, how we’ve carefully designed every element of our extraordinary home and the wonderful, caring and warm staff we attract, hire and continually train.

An accredited Butterfly care home, Langham Court has always had a family-home feel, with our residents and team friends who care about each other, as much as you would in a traditional family.

There are no rotas, schedules or tick-box care plans at Langham Court. All our residents are “free to be me” – given the time, space and freedom to live exactly as they would like every day.

Langham Court Lounge

Living in households, with communal dining and open spaces indoors and out, banish all thoughts of old-fashioned traditional care homes – we couldn’t be more different.

On the street where you live

With residents living communally, we prioritise nurturing authentic relationships and communication, which is so important for people living with dementia.

However, when it comes to personal space, we focus on creating an environment as close to home as possible. Each resident has their own room, which they can furnish with their own furniture, belongings and knick-knacks, living in familiar surroundings which encourages memories and a sense of home.

All residents can have their front doors painted in their favourite colour – just like in a real street – and each door has a knocker.

Langham Court’s famous memory boxes 

Returning to their rooms, residents can orient themselves by way of “memory boxes” mounted on the wall outside their front door.

These memory boxes are full of photos and trinkets of people and times important to the resident.  Walk along any corridor, and you’ll see fantastic keepsakes from interesting lives lived well and pictures of much-loved family and friends.

Langham Court Memory Boxes

On our last walk-round, we noted photos of old pets, memorabilia of fundraising campaigns led and jobs done with pride.

Within memory boxes, there’s always something to learn about each resident, always something to comment on, and always something to stimulate conversation and encourage reminiscence.

Taking a stroll down memory lane

When residents step outside their door and go to one of our lounges or outside, they’ll walk past reminiscence areas full of – for example, pictures and items to do with travelling, sewing and gardening.

There’s a nurse’s office, the outside of which is decorated as a milliner. There’s a fascia of an old sweet shop, a travel corner with items residents past and present have brought in from the travels around the globe.

Langham Court Memory Corner

All these fascias, images and items are carefully chosen to mirror hobbies, experiences or moments our residents may have enjoyed in the past.

 

Langham Court Travel Rememberance

This becomes fertile ground for remembering, conversation, and a moment of connection and learning, which helps residents feel more understood and comfortable.

The joy of being outside

Residents can visit garden areas within our internal courtyard whenever they like. These areas are looked after partly by residents who take much pride in their gardening prowess and often have some little visitors to lend a hand.

Langham Court terrace garden

There are also enclosed outdoor terraces where residents can walk, sit and look at our animals, either alone, with another resident or with a team member.

One resident whose job involved horses loves to spend summer days in his favourite sun trap, looking out across the grounds towards the lake and at the horses who live on our Estate.

View From The Langham Court Terrace

 

“Langham feels like a family home. Photographs of the residents and staff are everywhere, as is the stuff of life – books, toys, instruments, puzzles, hats, musical instruments, and artwork. The team feel like family.  There is lots of laughter and fun evidently going on. Very caring housekeeping staff stop and chat with residents and visitors alike. The philosophy seems to be kindness and interaction first, then doing whatever task is at hand next. Langham Court is of the best standard a care home could be, and I recommend it 100%.”  – Ela S, family member

 

Visit us and see for yourself.

Langham Court is full of love, conversation, colour and joy.  It’s an extraordinary place. If you’d like to learn more about our Estate and meet our fantastic team, please call us to arrange a tour of the grounds and homes.

For more information on what it means to be a Butterfly Care Home, please read this.

At the Huntington & Langham Estate, we provide luxury care across our two specialist care homes.   Family-owned and run, we offer dignified, compassionate and personalised care to our residents, giving them the nurturing support they need to continue living full, independent and meaningful lives. 

To arrange a visit to the Estate and tour our homes and grounds, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.  

 

Retro Reminiscence at Langham Court

Anyone who has visited Langham Court will have seen an array of themed areas along the corridors.  These include travel corner with old fashioned suitcase and keepsakes from Africa, the crafting area along with a Singer sewing machine, as well as our old fashioned sweet shop complete with jars of treats.

Each has been added to prompt conversation and reminiscence, which is especially important for those people living with Dementia at the Estate.

As part of our ongoing commitment to continually enhance our care at Langham Court we have added a new wall mural, featuring a village shopping scene and are now planning a new focus on adding memorabilia from the 50’s or 60’s.

Langham Court

We need your help!

We are asking for donations of any items from this era, particularly which are linked to the topics of pets, sport and music as we’ve identified them as common interests among many of our current residents.

Please let us know if you have any household items that can be displayed on walls and shelves, like old vinyl records, vintage album cover posters, football team shirts, we would love them!  We’ll use them to decorate areas around Langham Court to stimulate conversation and reminiscence.

Please call 01428 606 143 or drop us an email at langham@hlestate.co.uk 

The role of a Homemaker in Langham Court

Here at The Huntingdon and Langham Estate, the emotional wellbeing of our residents is paramount.  This ethos runs through our entire Estate and everyone who works within it, but is perhaps best exemplified in our activity organisers, who we call our Homemakers.

Our Homemakers are pivotal in making our residents feel like part of our family.  They plan activities, outings and events, including creative pastimes, quizzes, games, seated exercises, musical performances and trips out in our minibus.

Why we plan for our activities not to be organised

Our activities are not scheduled or set in stone.  Instead, our Homemakers are on hand each day to use their experience, knowledge of each resident and their intuition to provide 1:1 or group activities tailored to the personalities and desires of the residents who are doing it.

All residents can enjoy whichever activity, conversation or session is being created at any particular time, come and go as they wish, suggest alternatives and request (and get) the activities they prefer to get involved in whenever they wish.

Taking part in hobbies

This is obviously unlike traditional settings where activities are at set times, may be inappropriate for some people, and can make other who aren’t involved feel left out and unstimulated.

Homemaker Claire explains, “When you’ve seen somebody who’s been briefly isolated and, you know, feeling separate and suddenly something different is going on and they’re part of a group, with somebody connecting with them, this is so essential for personal well-being.”

 

We’d love to tell you about a day in the life of one of our Homemakers… but we can’t

There is no such thing as a day in the life of our Homemakers – what there is, however, is a lot of heart, love and joy and a desire to know our residents, understand what makes them tick and what makes them happy, read the room and see what’s needed.

The role of a homemaker on the estate is about so much more than just providing activities, keeping residents occupied or paying lip service to fun. It’s about creating an environment that nurtures emotional well-being, spreads joy, and helps residents feel safe, comfortable, and connected.

And what happens when the activity chosen just isn’t going down well? That’s when each Homemaker can use their own go-tos to engage, calm or activate the room as needed.

For Homemaker Claire, that’s music.  “My go-to is music because even if somebody is agitated, you sing a song you know they like, they cannot help but join in. And it’s one of those things that can be calming, but it can also be uplifting. It’s quite adaptable.”

Bringing your whole self to work every day

Every Homemaker has the ability and encouragement to play to their strengths or passions – whatever they may be.  We want all our Homemakers to bring their whole selves to work.

Meaningful relationships

We know that everybody has something to offer. It’s about bringing your whole self and your heart, doing what comes naturally and not being afraid to do that and create joy, fun and happiness in a spontaneous way.

Over to Claire again, “There are a lot of people (in the Estate) who like the outdoors, like nature, and we’re really lucky to have these grounds. So sometimes connecting with nature and the green and the being outside and sometimes we’ll go and sit in the sunshine, and that brings a real sense of joy to people. And it’s those little moments, those connections, those conversations, those little bits of joy that make up the fabric of someone’s life.”

To watch the full interview with our MD Charlie and homemaker Claire, please click here.

We care about family and friends too

Our ethos of creating meaningful moments every day, doesn’t end with those living on the Estate, we also understand the impact our care can have on the emotional wellbeing of friends and family of a loved one living at Langham Court, giving comfort through providing the best standard of personalised care we can.

“The staff feel like family, no uniforms or name badges, they are very kind and patient. There is lots of laughter and fun evidently going on. Everywhere is kept beautifully clean by very caring housekeeping staff, who stop and chat with residents and visitors alike, the philosophy seems to be kindness and interaction first, then doing whatever task is at hand next. The gardens are beautiful, with views towards trees and fields of sheep and horses. The gardens have secure fences so the residents can walk in them safely. There are lots of engaging activities for residents, plus a day centre twice a week that residents can join in with. The food is great, prepared freshly and daily on the premises. Langham is of the best standard a care home could be and recommend it 100%.” – Ela S, resident’s relative.

As a team we are like an extended family and are always open to welcoming new people into our circle, so if you’d like to learn more about being a Homemaker and creating joy for our residents, please visit our website or complete our register your interest .

At the Huntington & Langham Estate, we provide luxury care across our two specialist care homes.   Family-owned and run, we offer dignified, compassionate and personalised care to our residents, giving them the nurturing support they need to continue living full, independent and meaningful lives.

To arrange a visit to the Estate and tour our homes and grounds, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.  

An Outstanding Specialist Dementia Care Home

Researching care homes can be difficult, as they can appear to be all much of a muchness.  However, all you need to know about life at Langham Court is this: we love our residents, they love us, and we’re all one big family here.

Visit us, and the affection is palpable.  It’s obvious in how we all chat together and how those living here talk with us.  It’s intrinsic to the day-to-day life of our Estate. And it’s in the very fabric of our being – from why we were founded and have grown, to how we have embedded a strong framework with love and personalised care at our core.

Let’s take it back to the beginning.

1978 – our story begins

Our story begins in 1978 when Marylin Hoare founded one of the country’s first nursing care homes.  At the time, she was a Surrey-based nurse – so passionate about offering high-quality nursing care that she decided to open a luxury but affordable 24-hour nursing care home.

But Marylin didn’t want the replicate the perfunctory care she saw in other places – she wanted love and relationships to be at the core of her home, just as they were in family homes around the country.

Marylin Hoare

Today, the Hoare family continue to run our Estate, which now has two care homes. Marilyn and her husband Geoff still live on the Estate, while their son Charlie is now the MD and ensures Marylin’s high standards of care are still lovingly provided.

Importantly, our way of working is now codified and enshrined in the Butterfly Approach.

What is the Butterfly Approach?

Developed by Meaningful Care Matters, the Butterfly approach is built around a person-centred care culture where people are ‘free to be me’.

There are very few specialist care homes where the approach is focused on meaningful care – a surprise if you consider that everyone’s experience of living with dementia is different.

With such a variety of experiences and specialist care needs, there shouldn’t be a one size fits all approach to dementia care. And that’s why we value emotional intelligence and domestic household living, honouring the core belief that every person living with dementia has a unique story which has meaning and that matters.

Butterfly Training Day

All of our team demonstrate these core values, and we invest in them to make sure they always provide the very best possible loving care. Because of this, we live and breathe the Butterfly care culture through our family-run home and family-style care.

We care for individuals, their personal needs and emotions, enabling our team to access the interior world of all our residents. But what does that look like in practice?

Daily life at Langham Court

Team members offer every resident the time and space to be themselves. We connect with everyone individually– getting to know them, their families and what gives them joy.

We understand what matters most to everyone on any one day, so all care is personalised in the moment.

Every hour of every day, we empower our residents to live as they did independently.  We bring their world into their daily life at Langham Court, stimulating them and building on their mental agility, encouraging them to continue pastimes or even take up new hobbies.

Meaningful moments

To do this well, our team are warm, caring and nurturing. They are also respectful, flexible and kind, enabling our residents to have a feeling of belonging and the ability to be spontaneous in the knowledge that their well-being and individuality are important to us.

What is unique about  Langham Court is our family-style dining which encourages conversation and a community feel. At the same time, individual doors to bedrooms mean privacy is there when residents need it.

Langham Court

We’re so happy with our recent extension, designed with specialist dementia living in mind, with three new day rooms with different views over the Estate and access to the enclosed outdoor patio area or sun terrace.

“Langham Court is set up as separate households that all share dining areas, offering small-scale living within self-contained communities. Residents within these households tend to gravitate towards the shared areas in the day in much the same way as you would at home, to dine together and spend time with one another, but in a way that avoids the mass dining experience of many other care homes.” – Charlie, our MD.

Wherever you are in Langham Court, you’ll see and feel the love.  If you’d like to learn more about our Estate and meet our fantastic team, please call us to arrange a tour of the grounds and homes.

For more information on what it means to be a Specialist Dementia Care Home and how to select one for your needs, please read this article.

At the Huntington & Langham Estate, we provide luxury care across our two specialist care homes.   Family-owned and run, we offer dignified, compassionate and personalised care to our residents, giving them the nurturing support they need to continue living full, independent and meaningful lives.  

To arrange a visit to the Estate and tour our homes and grounds, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.  

 

Spreading Joy at Langham Court

We all need moments of joy in our lives and as a Homemaker at Langham Court, there is nothing more rewarding than spreading Joy amongst those who live in our Specialist Dementia Care Home.

Claire shares with our MD Charlie Hoare what makes the role of Homemaker so special, providing emotional wellbeing with no one day the same. With the team all bringing their own personal passions into their roles, Claire explains how her go to is creating moment of joy through music.

Dementia Care with a Heart

Here at the Huntington and Langham Estate, we offer holistic care to all our residents. One very visible face of this care is our Homemakers.

Caring, patient, creative and kind, our Homemakers create strong relationships with our residents and contribute to the happy, friendly family environment we’re so proud of.

Homemaker

Our Homemakers are key to this environment, ensuring everyone who lives with us has the highest quality of care, retains their dignity and individuality and has the opportunity to participate as much as they want in the life of the home. One way this is played out is through our activities.

Now, many care homes offer extensive structured programming for residents. Every so often, everyone gets shepherded into a hall, whether they want to be or not, and there’s a musical guest or some other attraction.

At Langham Court, our Homemakers don’t rely on structured programming for large groups. We don’t want individual residents to be lost in the crowd – bored or overwhelmed with something they don’t want to do or forced to do something that their sensory loss, complex need or dementia renders meaningless or upsetting.

Instead, our Homemakers focus on creating many opportunities every day for residents to do, see and talk about, and residents are free to join. These activities can still be group activities, of course, but are more likely to be spontaneous, informal and one-to-one or smaller group activities. As our Homemakers know our residents so well, they can also design activities for each person, featuring elements of that person’s experience, skills, desires, interests or hobbies.

Petersfield Lake Outing

Throughout the week, Homemakers create and deliver individual and group activities to meet social, emotional, cultural, intellectual, vocational, physical, and spiritual needs. They also cultivate links with the community – bringing in outside individuals and organisations for entertainment and fun, as well as staging rooms and creating inviting setups for people to respond to.

All our residents are “free to be me” and receive personalised care focusing on them as individuals. We’re all about meaningful connections, unique stories and personal choice. Residents are in the driver’s seat, and our Homemakers carefully and skilfully create journeys for them to go on if they so desire.

 

Just last week, we had a visit from Cycling Without Age organised by one of our Homemakers. This fantastic volunteer-led charity brings Trishaw bikes to nursing and care homes, enabling residents to feel the wind in their hair as they are cycled around in comfort and style.

Rides Around The Estate

“The amazing work Cycling Without Age do is such a perfect fit for the Estate. The installation of the paths around our grounds were designed to enable people using wheelchairs to explore further afield. The fact the paths can be accessed on the Cycling Without Age e-bike provides people with even more freedom than we had imagined. They can go faster and feel the wind in their hair, and all without the stigma of a wheelchair.” – Charlie – MD

At Langham Court, every team member has our residents’ well-being central to their role. Whether you’re a nurse, work in maintenance or laundry, we make sure there are many opportunities for you to engage with our residents so they have stimulation, company and support. That’s why we have one member of every team, plus one representative family member, at our monthly Home Action Team meeting. During these meetings, we look at various elements of our care which could be even better and action them that month.

In April, we decided to think about people’s life stories, how we can share memories together, and the emotional impact this can have on everyone’s wellbeing; residents and staff alike.

Some of the ideas included creating themed boxes to stimulate conversation and reminiscence as well is sharing family photos and holiday snaps/postcards, which team members can have available in the pockets of their aprons. It may sound simple, but getting to know the people you look after has so many benefits. By knowing the name of the company they worked for, or where they spent their honeymoon, you can create a connection that helps them feel they are not alone and also form the trust needed for them to feel safe in your care.

Here at Langham Court, we’re a community: a family where we all know and care for each other. Multiple daily spontaneous interactions with each resident mean that everyone feels like they matter 24/7 and is part of everyday life – even if they’re not participating in formal activities. We know we offer superb resident-centred care, but we never rest on our laurels. Our Homemakers know they make a positive difference in other people’s lives daily and are always learning, growing and honing their skills.

If you’d like to learn more about being a Homemaker, please visit our website. If you’d like to find out more about our care home for a loved one who is living with Dementia, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.

At the Huntington & Langham Estate, we provide luxury care across our two specialist care homes. Family-owned and run, we offer dignified, compassionate and personalised care to our residents, giving them the nurturing support they need to continue living full, independent and meaningful lives. We are Butterfly and Dragonfly accredited.

To arrange a visit to the Estate and tour our homes and grounds, please call 01428 604 600 or complete this form.