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Monthly Archives

February 2019

5 Top Tips for getting your care home creative

By Care Home

With the launch of our Oomph! Create workshop, Heather, from The Lightbox Museum and Gallery, has some top tips for bringing art into your care setting:

Enjoy the process of making rather than the finished piece.

It’s great to have lots of beautiful work to put up, but also the enjoyment that is created through making should not be underestimated. Not everything has to look like a Turner painting! It can be the first time they have spent 20 minutes sitting and painting, or the colours that they love, that make the artwork so good.

Use what you see.

Sometimes we have an abundance of one item that can be used in many different ways. For example, a kitchen roll tube can be used to make a multitude of craft projects, such as owls or puppets, or they can even be used to print with to make a lovely circle pattern. If you have a garden, you could use leaves and twigs to create nature inspired collages.

It’s not always about making.

Some people like to know more about the artists, rather than make themselves. Print out biographies and share some of your residents’ knowledge. One of them may have been to an exhibition or show that you are talking about.

Try to use good quality materials as far as possible.

If you want to paint, try to provide the best you can afford. There is nothing worse than painting in watercolours and the paper being too thin so it wrinkles! Use card if you prefer so that it has a bit of weight to it. Acrylics are good paints to use too, they make a nice block colour (but note that any mess can be tricky to wash out of clothes).

Create a gallery wall.

Showcase what you have been doing in your care home! You don’t need big fancy frames, you could have a pin board which changes regularly. It gives residents pride in their work and also means that their friends and families can see what they’re up to.

To date, 127 homes have participated in the Oomph! Create workshop, with 208 staff members taking part across the UK. 98% would recommend the workshop, and 77% said it was even better than expected. Our next workshop in the series is based on nature, encouraging residents to get outdoors and appreciate nature, as well as bringing the outdoors in – Oomph! Nature will be launching in March, so watch this space!

Partnership with Arthritis Action to improve strength, balance and co-ordination

By Community

We have teamed up with UK Charity, Arthritis Action, to deliver exercise programmes designed specifically for older adults with arthritis.

For the first time, a collaboration between Oomph! and Arthritis Action has brought together experts in arthritis, with experts in delivering exercise programmes to older adults.

The new programmes have three levels of intensity, and target areas of the body commonly affected by arthritis: the hip, knee and spine. These programmes aim to improve participants’ strength, balance and co-ordination, with a focus on regaining, developing and maintaining physical independence.

Launching this month on various Oomph! platforms, the content will be available on the Oomph! app. Staff in community venues – such as retirement villages, sheltered housing, and day centres – that have been trained by Oomph! to deliver fun and engaging exercise classes, will now be able to view the programmes and use these to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis for class participants.

The programmes follow demand from Oomph! Instructors for strength and balance content, and equally the desire to provide relevant and fresh content that will improve the health of participants whilst still continuing to engage them.

Shantel Irwin, CEO of Arthritis Action, “We are delighted to have partnered with Oomph! to develop an exercise programme for people with musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions. Our aim is to build people’s strength and confidence to exercise safely, and are pleased to have been able to share our knowledge and expertise on arthritis and MSK conditions.

Oomph!, experts in delivering activity programmes to the elderly, are best placed to deliver this exciting new programme across their networks in the UK. We very much look forward to measuring the impact of this programme on participants and are particularly excited about building people’s strength, confidence and ability to get out of a chair and achieve physical independence.”

Ben Allen, CEO and Founder of Oomph!, “We are excited to be partnering with Arthritis Action to create content specifically focused around strength and balance for those with Arthritis. It is vital that we provide resources that Instructors value and that will have a substantial impact on the physical mobility of participants – the partnership provides the perfect opportunity to do this.”

Country Court Care gets some Oomph! for their residents!

By Care Home

“Another great day! Buzzing atmosphere, happy residents, happy carers. Well enjoyed by all despite the cold weather!” One member of staff commented after a recent trip.

We have partnered with Country Court Care, a leading UK Care Group, to deliver awesome exercise classes and creative activities for residents, as well as engaging trips out.

A pilot project has been agreed where 4 homes have been embracing the exercise and activity training and 8 homes have been going out to local destinations.

Taking a whole-home approach to activities, staff in 4 Country Court Care Homes have been trained in our Wellbeing Leadership programme. This ensures that they are equipped with everything they need to create and sustain a person-centred plan of varied exercise and activities that residents love. The training is tailored to each home, and focuses on meeting and exceeding regulator requirements.

The programme also includes a series of skills workshops, including Oomph! Create, which has been developed in collaboration with The Lightbox Art Gallery & Museum in Woking. The workshop focuses on teaching staff the fundamentals of sketching, painting, sculpting and collage, and how they can practically apply these. Further workshops will focus on culture and nature.

One member of staff commented, “I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of Oomph! training and look forward to trying it with residents.”

Additionally, engaging days out to a range of destinations are running for 8 Country Court Care homes, with added value and variety to trip experiences created through partnerships with the National Trust and HQ Theatres.

The trips aim to connect residents to the people and places that matter most to them – Country Court Care trips have previously included unexpected locations, such as the Blue Planet Aquarium, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton and the Sloane Square Christmas lights.

A member of staff said, “The driver is brilliant, he always gives that bit extra. It makes a huge difference having the transport all organised. The residents love getting out and enjoying fresh air.”

Alykhan Kachra, Managing Director at Country Court Care, said: “Both residents and staff have given very positive feedback on Oomph!’s exciting and fresh approach in our pilot care homes. We are delighted to see our partnership enabling activities and exercise that are meaningful and will enrich the lives of our residents”

Ben Allen, Oomph!’s CEO, said: “Oomph! are excited to be in partnership with Country Court Care – it is a privilege to be an integral part of the organisation’s wellbeing provision and we are excited to help ensure that residents at Country Court Care homes live a full life, for life.”