Whitehill Court Evening Care Service
A story by Bield Housing & Care
We provided an evening support service enabling people living with dementia in East Dunbartonshire the opportunity to go out in their local community and enjoy an evening meal and participate in activities that are meaningful to them. This also gives much needed respite to their carers and families.
What Whitehill Court Evening Care Service did
We have liaised with local support networks to increase the number of service users accessing the Evening Care Service. This includes Post Diagnostic Workers who support people when they are first diagnosed with Dementia, signposting to services which will support them and their families on their Dementia journey. We also have close contact with Carer’s Link and Ceartas Advocacy Service who refer people to our service. GP surgeries and local Hubs all have information on the evening service with self-referral forms.
We offer one night per week for four weeks to service users from 5pm til 9pm giving service users the opportunity to go out and enjoy a meal and socialise in their local community. Activities include having an evening meal at Whitehill Court or going out for a meal to local restaurants, cafes and pubs, Theatre and Pantomime trips, having theme nights in the centre all of which helps to keep service users active and feeling part of their community.
This also enables carers to have some respite from their caring role allowing them to participate in their own hobbies, meeting friends, going to the pictures or just being able to relax knowing their relative is being cared for in a safe environment. After the four week period, the service user goes on to a waiting list to return again for another four weeks another month.
Since starting the Evening Care Service, Phyllis seemed to have more structure to her week and no longer goes out on her own so much. Using the Evening Care Service has opened up doors to other services for her and she now uses the Daycare and the Short Breaks Service. This has been a very positive thing for her daughter and Phyllis as at times their personalities clashed and this created quite a bit of tension between them.
Staff have found that Phyllis really enjoys the company in the Evening Care Service and has been known to ask if there are any cancellations as she would like to come along as often as possible.
Since starting the Evening Care Service, Mrs. M. can relax in the evening catching up with friends, family and having some quiet time. Mr. M. enjoys the company, meeting new friends and feeling part of the community again.
After a spell in Short Breaks, she made a self-referral for the Evening Care Service and she hasn’t regretted it. Jean comes along to the service like a ray of sunshine, laughing and having fun. Jean has made great friends with other service users and staff and she is always telling everyone how much she enjoys coming to the service.
What Bield Housing & Care has learnedThis funding has provided an extended service in the evening which is invaluable to carers. Evenings can be a very stressful time for people living with Dementia. Going out for a short while can help them feel more relaxed when returning home to their carer or families.
We have found that coming along to the Evening Care Service opens up doors to other services available to carers and service users. We have found that these services are invaluable to carers to help them to continue their role as carer for longer.