AN INNER city farm is running dementia friendly art workshops for care home residents in South Yorkshire.
A series of four workshops have been taking place at Broadacres Care Home, with residents painting, drawing, moulding clay and creating felted soap bars.
The activities are organised by Alex Raimondi, dementia project officer at Heeley City Farm, in the heart of Sheffield.
Alex has been visiting Broadacres Care Home, on Naylor Street, Parkgate, Rotherham, since December, with further workshops running up to April 2019.
The first workshop involved soap felting – creating wool sleeves for soap bars to help preserve the soap and make a gentle exfoliator.
The second session saw residents and staff making clay plant pots, hand moulding the pots before decorating them using different tools.
Resident Doreen Vernon said: “I’ve never made anything like this before. It’ll look lovely in my window.”
Alex said: “Creative, tactile and multi-sensory experiences like art-making can support and improve health and wellbeing.
“The workshops combine natural, art and sensory materials. The activities provide opportunities to explore creativity, learn new skills and promote social interaction, on verbal and non-verbal levels.”
Heeley City Farm’s dementia department was launched in 2015 to support those living with dementia and their carers.
As part of their work with Broadacres Care Home, the farm’s dementia department manager, Lee Pearse, will be running a “Farming Comes to You” session at the home.
Goats, rabbits, guinea pigs and chickens will be among the animals paying the residents a visit in May.
Jo MacGregor, activities coordinator at Broadacres Care Home, said: “Residents have been thoroughly enjoying trying something different.
“We always look forward to the visits from Alex, for the arts and crafts workshops, and they’ve proved very popular with the residents.
“They’ve enjoyed being creative, while having a chat and a cuppa, and then seeing and using their finished creations.
“We can’t thank Alex and Lee from Heeley City Farm enough for all the work they’ve been doing with the home. It has been brilliant and we hope we’ll be able to continue the relationship in future.”