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Care home residents use tablet devices to get to know each other better

Red Rose care home in Ebbw Vale started delivering group sessions using tablet devices, and its residents suddenly discovered so much more about each other.

Red Rose Care Home provides residential and nursing care for elderly 32 residents and younger people living with a disability. The home wasn’t offering any digital activities, but when Activities Coordinator Leanne Williams went along to Bingo and Beyond, an event run by the Aneurin Bevan Health Board Ffrind i Mi project, and heard a presentation from Digital Communities Wales, she decided this was something she definitely wanted to try.

How

Leanne met with DCW Advisor Angela Jones and together they agreed a course of action. Leanne was able to borrow two DCW tablet devices so she could test whether the residents enjoyed using them.

Impact

Leanne says, “The loan of the equipment enabled me to add digital sessions to the activities programme.   Residents have been able to participate in group sessions and get support on a one-to-one basis. It’s been a great way of finding out about people’s particular interests and has helped me to tailor the activities accordingly.”

One lady has really enjoyed using the tablets. She loved looking at familiar places on Google Earth and reminiscing about places she had lived in or visited. She also used YouTube a lot to find old songs to sing along to.  She really looked forward to learning new things.

Another resident has used a tablet to watch old rugby matches and footage of Tredegar Male Voice Choir on YouTube. He was a member of the choir for many years and it brought back lots of good memories.  He also loved looking at the places where he grew up and seeing how they have changed over the years.

Leanne says, “The group sessions were very rewarding. They brought people together and using the technology encouraged the residents to talk with each other. They reminisced about places they had lived in or visited over the years, and they enjoyed having a sing-song with each other as they watched various artists on YouTube.

“I just want to say thank you to Digital Communities Wales for loaning us the equipment and giving us the opportunity to try out new things with the residents.  As a result the home has agreed to buy a tablet so that digital activities can continue now that the loan period has ended.”