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Dementia Care at Amherst Court
Life at Amherst Court is the beginning of a new era for its Residents. At Amherst Court staff are trained in dementia care in order to understand each person’s dementia and how it affects them as an individual.
Staff work with the person in order to meet their specific needs, interests and wishes, which enables them to have the best experience and fulfilment they deserve.
We have a dedicated dementia suite managed by a Dementia Care Manager who is supported by highly trained specialist dementia carers. We do everything we can to ensure all our residents receive the very best care whilst they are at Amherst Court.
Avante’s Philosophy of Care – The Eden Alternative
In order to ensure residents have the best positive experience at Amherst Court, Avante’s Philosophy of Care, The Eden Alternative, is at the core of everything. The negative states of loneliness, helplessness and boredom can have a significant negative effect on residents and the Philosophy enables staff to develop their role to ensure residents are given the companionship, feeling of self-worth and continued interests for them to have a positive lifestyle at Amherst Court.
The Eden UK Register of Homes (Report Pre-COVID)
The validators for The Eden Alternative said Relationships between residents and staff were observed as being relaxed and friendly and residents seen interacting well with each other. Amherst Court is supported by the local community as demonstrated by the fundraising carried out by a local group to buy the ‘Magic Table, which is enjoyed by the residents and by children from the local school when they come to spend time with the residents.
Relatives are invited to cinema evenings with the residents and animals are welcomed in the home, the assistant manager’s dog comes to work with her and budgerigars are very much at home in one of the lounges. The corridors and lounges display collages of residents’ photos and each resident has a memory box outside their room with personal pictures and articles familiar to them.
Examples of Activities
During COVID restrictions in 2021, residents at Amherst Court had been sad at not being able to see much of the spring flowers and blossom because of restricted travel combined with the unseasonable cold weather. So a lovely and relaxed morning was spent with residents and staff, thinking of words that reminded them of spring. The jotted down words were then used by the group to form a spring poem, which they then recited the together; reminisced about their childhoods and enjoyed a lovely cup of tea afterwards.
The environment is very important for those living with dementia. At Amherst Court the layout of social areas mimic a domestic environment so residents make the link with memories of their own homes. There are no visual or physical barriers and residents are able to move freely within their suite.
There are quiet spaces for someone who might be feeling anxious or confused and a few minutes with a supportive person is often all that is needed for reassurance.
There is an attractive enclosed and safe courtyard with raised beds, where residents are encouraged and helped to maintain, or form an interest in, gardening skills. Our brand new sensory garden is the perfect environment for our residents to relax and enjoy the outdoors.
The outdoor courtyard at Amherst is also used for entertainment and during the past year entertainers visited Amherst Court whilst residents could enjoy and view from the balconies without fear of contamination.
Avante acknowledges the dining experience is very important for those with dementia, at Amherst Court dining tables are arranged so that interaction among residents and staff is encouraged. The dining areas are set in order to improve the appetite of someone with dementia, use contrasting colours for cutlery, crockery, tablecloths and plates, with chairs placed well apart to enable residents to eat in comfort, without obstacles.