Residents and staff at luxury care home, Rivermede Court in Egham are celebrating being selected as a finalist in the NAPA Arts in Care Homes Award – a national award which recognises a setting that has shown a commitment and passion for embedding arts-based activities and has demonstrated the difference they can make to people’s lives.
Using art to keep residents connected
Rivermede Court, located on The Avenue, has an outstanding reputation for arts based activities and using art as a way to keep residents connected with the local community. Residents regularly make items to sell at Egham fairs and have raised over £800 for Dementia UK and the Alzheimer’s Society over the last year by selling their tie-dye T-shirts, shopping bags, candles in gin glasses, resin jewellery, coasters and paintings.
Last year, the residents, led by Hanka Vlhova, Activities Co-Ordinator at Rivermede Court, created a stunning collage, ‘The Blossoms of Rivermede’, out of pine cones, sticks and moss which was displayed at Egham Library and then auctioned for charity, raising £120 for the Alzheimer’s Society.
This art initiative was an extension of the care home’s ‘Circle of Life’ recycling initiative in which residents used recycled newspapers to make eco-friendly seed papers embedded with seeds from Rivermede Court’s garden. A total of 400 of these easy to plant seed papers were sent to local schools, nurseries, churches, residents’ relatives and community groups so they could grow beautiful flowers and create new life.
In addition, the residents regularly create artwork for the care home – for example, each month they create tree decorations based on a relevant theme.
Hanka Vlhova, Activities Co-ordinator, Rivermede Court says, “We are all thrilled to have been selected as a finalist in the NAPA Arts in Care Homes Awards as we pride ourselves on the wide range of art activities that residents get involved in at Rivermede Court. There is a lot of research which proves that access to the arts makes residents happier and healthier – and we certainly see amongst our residents how much pleasure they get from joining in our art initiatives.”
Candice O’Neill, General Manager at Rivermede Court adds, “Congratulations to Hanka and our residents for being selected for this award. It has been wonderful to see how rewarding our intergenerational and community art initiatives have been for our residents and how much pleasure they get from our regular art activities. Art is key to our ethos at Rivermede Court, enhancing the quality of life for our residents and increasing their sense of wellbeing.”
Hanka Vlhova and some Rivermede Court residents will attend the NAPA Arts in Care Homes Award finalist celebrations on 16 September. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on 7 October.
Rivermede Court offers exceptional residential, dementia and respite care. It is part of the Cinnamon Care Collection which, based on reviews by residents, friends and relatives, has recently been named a Top 20 Large Care Home Group by leading care home reviews website, carehome.co.uk. Reviews from Rivermede Court were an impressive 9.9/10.