CRAFTY care home residents got creative with visitors as part of National Care Home Open Day.
Plate painting and a papier-mâché chicken were among the projects taking place at Pelton Grange Care Home, in Pelton, near Chester-le-Street.
Visitors included members of the Hawthorn Project, an elderly social group funded by Durham County Council, which usually meets at Pelton Community Centre.
As part of the open day, which sees homes across the country opening their doors to visitors, the Hawthorn Project chose to hold the session at Pelton Grange Care Home on this occasion.
Hyleen Wood, from Pelton Community Centre, led residents through a plate painting activity, which saw them adding a willow pattern or their own designs to the blank crockery.
She then took the plates back to the community centre to be fired, before returning them to residents to display in the home.
Resident Bill Watson, whose vision is limited, was pleased with his finished plate. He said: “I must have been an artist in a past life.”
Among the other visitors to the home were service users and staff from charity GOALs (Go Out and Live), a community-based day care and out of hours service for people with learning disabilities.
The charity’s project worker, Hannah Barrett, made a hen out of wire after hearing the home was set to adopt several chickens later in the year.
After covering it in papier-mâché, she brought the wire hen to the home, and residents worked with GOALs service users to decorate it with feathers, glitter and sequins.
Resident Yo Barras said: “It was lovely to see so many people come to the home. They were so interesting. They did a great job on the chicken and I had lots of fun decorating it.”
Lindsey Sale-Thorn, activities coordinator at Pelton Grange Care Home, said: “It’s been a brilliant day and we’d like to say a big thank you to all the visitors who came to see us as part of National Care Home Open Day.
“Residents who have difficulty mobilising and going out to activities have thoroughly enjoyed having the Hawthorn Project in the home.
“Everyone has enjoyed seeing so many new faces and we’re looking forward to the next time the members of GOALs can visit the residents.
“Ensuring our residents can continue to be active members of the wider community is so important for their wellbeing and sense of inclusion.
“Many elderly people who live at home have difficulty getting out by themselves and this can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness.
“This is something we aim to change when people come to reside with us and community partnerships with initiatives like the Hawthorn Project and charities like GOALs are vital to that aim.”