An award-winning Gloucestershire homecare company has boxed clever with a new idea to help its clients who have dementia to get more from their visits.
Staff at Stroud-based DoCare are creating a memory box for each client with dementia, which will contain things like photos, or ornaments, with information and ideas about the person and what interests them.
When a support worker visits, they’ll look through the memory box together with the client, which will stimulate conversation and provide meaningful moments. The boxes are red – recycled from DoCare’s stationery delivery cartons – which, unlike some colours, can be easily seen by people with dementia.
“I had the idea from something that care homes do,” said Kerry-Ann Lees, DoCare Area Manager and Dementia Lead. “They will often provide what they call a distraction box, so when a resident becomes agitated or upset, the contents of the box will distract them.
“This takes the idea a step further. We’re calling them memory boxes, because this is a more positive name, and means we can be proactive in helping our clients to achieve memorable moments.”
DoCare is this year celebrating ten years in business. Among its accolades are two Gloucestershire Business of the Year awards. Natasha Richardson is based with the Yate team, and Kerry-Ann is a former National Dementia Carer of the Year.
The company covers 1,000 square miles, providing home support across Gloucestershire, South Gloucestershire and West Oxfordshire. It has teams based in Bristol, Cirencester, Cheltenham, Dursley, Gloucester, Stroud, Witney and Yate.