Older people’s charity The Abbeyfield Society recently welcomed April Dobson as its new Head of Dementia Innovation, as it puts into action ambitious plans to further develop services for people living with dementia.
Dobson joins Abbeyfield with extensive experience as an Extra Care Housing Manager, specialising in developing plans for supporting residents living with dementia. Her previous experience includes housing and estate management, resident participation and nursing.
April Dobson says: “I’m excited to be joining Abbeyfield at a time when the charity is working on innovative new developments that will undoubtedly benefit the whole care sector. Abbeyfield’s commitment to really making time for residents in its care homes and houses allows all to be treated as individuals. I am looking forward to working in an organisation which adopts this person-centred approach, as it provides an environment where residents who are living with dementia can find greater understanding of the reality they live with daily, thereby improving their quality of life.”
Abbeyfield is currently constructing a state-of-the-art 62-bed dementia care home in Winnersh in Berkshire. The scheme, due to open in 2016, has been designed around the needs of its future residents. It features a free-flowing circular design and stimulating sensory gardens, enabling residents to wander safely within the building and grounds. It will also feature memory-stimulating areas, home-style lounge areas, vintage memorabilia and a shop ‘set’ where residents can recreate the familiarity of everyday life, thereby reducing anxiety and frustration, and promoting greater wellbeing.
April will be driving forward a plan of dementia-focused developments across the charity’s houses and care homes.