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Uninvolved and isolated
The sight of groups of bored older care home residents sitting in front of a communal TV for hours on end, no-one actually interested in what’s going on, is unfortunately very common.
It is a sad fact that many care home residents have little or no contact with their families and friends and endure hours of non-activity every day, some locked in their own personal world rarely relating or speaking to others. As a result, it is no wonder so many lose any interest or real engagement in their lives and become depressed – the start of a vicious circle of isolation.
Now a new project is hoping to make a difference by using digital technology to help older people to re-live a wealth of experiences and achievements and reinvigorate past interests.
Shared experiences and interests
Supported by funding from Nominet Trust, Alive Activities is undertaking a two-year project to facilitate Guided Reminiscence Workshops in care homes, which aim to improve self-esteem and interaction among residents.
The sessions will see iPads, the internet and a video projector being used to present content – adapted to suit different attention spans, abilities and preferences – that helps residents re-live and share their most important memories.
Identifying shared experiences and interests creates a focus for conversation, helping introverted, isolated people to join in and connect with both care home staff and other residents. This leads to increased interaction and improved relationships all round.