Hoo Peninsula Cares (wHoo Cares)
Community Activity Day for older residents
Weekly community Activity Day to engage older residents on the Hoo Peninsula in activities and exercise to improve their overall health and wellbeing and reduce social isolation and loneliness.
About the project
wHoo Cares received funding to hold a weekly community Activity Day to engage older residents on the Hoo Peninsula in activities and exercise to improve their overall health and wellbeing and reduce social isolation and loneliness.
On arrival the beneficiaries would socialise over a cuppa and some biscuits and then involve themselves in various activities including; board games, card games, puzzles, scrabble, arts and crafts, chair based exercise, music, song and poetry writing, bingo, charades and quizzes.
When Norman, 70 first came to wHoo Cares in July 2020 he was caring for his wife Sandra who was living with dementia. He was struggling with the pandemic which had escalated her dementia whilst also battling with his own health issues. He was isolated and felt alone. wHoo Cares put Norman in touch with Mark, a member of staff and Dementia Befriender to call him on a regular basis to provide support. Sandra died quite unexpectedly a few months later. Norman was devastated, his mood was very low and he became depressed whilst trying to come to terms with his loss.
When Activity Day was suggested to him, he said he didn't think it was for him but after a few conversations he was persuaded to give it a go. He slowly began to engage with others and his confidence grew, opening up about his wife and feeling safe enough to show his emotions and painful grief. He didn't smile often but he turned up every week. He became part of the scrabble group, he made friends and began to laugh again. He enjoyed the various music sessions and particularly liked the drumming and revealed that he used to be an Elvis impersonator and a singer/guitarist. Shortly after this he approached wHoo Cares to ask if he could do a music quiz for everyone. He prepared a quiz and sang songs to the group.
“Afterwards it was a joy to see his massive smile, confidence and sense of belonging. From this we have been able to engage him in a Music Shed too. Although still grieving his wife he is engaged, has friends and feels that his life includes thing that interest him.” Michelle Trumper, Community Development Officer, wHoo Cares