We want to be recognised as a forward thinking care home group, one that is at the heart of the local community, valued and respected by residents, their families and friends, healthcare professionals, staff and the community.
Partnerships and initiatives are at the core of our work in the home and information is readily available to residents and their families about how they can get involved. In addition to innovative partnerships with national charities, such as Alzheimer’s Society, Diabetes UK, Age UK and Equal Arts’ HenPower project, three key initiatives in the homes are the Outside In Club, the Out and About Club and Project Busy.
With designated trained champions for diabetes and hearing loss, we are now regularly screening in our homes and are referring individuals on for additional checks, tests and support as needed. We are seeing tangible positive results from this and our vision is to continue to build on our initiatives and partnerships to the benefit of all.
If you would like to find out about any of our screening and initiatives taking place in any of our homes, please call to speak to our of our specialist care advisors on 01423 859 859 or arrange a visit to one of our homes.
HenPower is an inspirational hen-keeping project linking older people with hens to combat social isolation. Essentially we bring a brood of hens to live in the gardens of our care homes, and we have been working with the forward thinking older people’s charity Equal Arts for some time now.
From building hen houses to creating arts and crafts or baking around the topic of hens, weekly sessions take place in the home, delivered by a ‘hen specialist’ from Equal Arts. HenPower uses the focus of the hens to bring our residents together, through collecting the eggs, petting a hen and taking an active involvement in the daily upkeep of these mild and pleasant animals.
One Home Manager commented; “The hens give a focus to the residents, some of whom have taken their new roles as ‘hensioners’ very seriously. They feed the hens, clean them out and collect the eggs. We get around eight eggs each day! We also bring the hens in to sit on the knees of our residents - they have a wonderful calming effect and we’ve seen such a positive uplift in the home.”
The £1m Lottery funded HenPower uses hen-keeping to tackle social isolation, reduce depression and improve people’s wellbeing and is seeing positive results in homes and settings across the UK.
We aim to do as much as possible to offer specialist care for residents with hearing issues. Around 6.4 million people in the UK over the age of 65 have some form of hearing loss. The World Health Organisation, (WHO) predicts that by 2030 adult onset hearing loss will be in the top ten disease burdens in the UK, above diabetes and cataracts.
Losing the ability to hear can be debilitating and distressing, particularly for older people who might already find themselves feeling isolated and vulnerable. Our homes have been set up to cater for those with hearing loss and we are working closely with the Royal national charity Action on Hearing Loss to give support and care, whilst keeping abreast of new technologies and treatments.
Supporting residents with diabetes
We tailor specialist care for residents with diabetes. A difficult condition to detect, diabetes affects around 1 in 7 older people and the older we get, the more likely people are to suffer from it. By 2025 it is estimated that more than 4 million people will have diabetes in the UK. This is why we take diabetes very seriously in our homes and we offer a free diabetes screening to all new residents.
We also train our care team so they are better informed about the condition and we have a dedicated diabetes champion in the home, who has undertaken specific training and can work with our residents and their families to tailor an individual care plan to support and monitor the condition.
We have a number of established and proactive clubs that regularly take place within our homes.
Out and About Club aims to get as many residents as possible and able out of the home, from short trips to the local shops to destinations and locations further away. Day trips to the seaside or a museum or other visitor attraction are always popular.
The Outside In Club focuses on the importance of inviting the community to engage with the home to forge stronger links. Many homes regularly meeting with their local groups, from schools to Rotary clubs, have given positive feedback on the many benefits this has.
Project Busy is aimed at giving support to residents who enjoy and wish to participate in an element of what might be called ‘normal’ housekeeping activity. This is the type of activity they would have carried out in their own homes and could include involvement in assisting the preparation of meals, folding laundry or washing up after meal times.
We launched a recognition scheme in late 2015 to give credit to the cooks and kitchens of Orchard Care Homes, and to push and standardise an excellent food and beverage offering across all our homes in the country.
Homes must achieve eight benchmarks of standards, which include FSA Food Rating - 5, CQC – Person centred dining experience and cooking fresh seasonal dishes from scratch. At least one Centre for Culinary Excellence will be established in each cluster area of Orchard Care Homes, with designated homes acting as a go-to centre to give support and training to other homes in its vicinity.
Nesfield Lodge in Leeds, Derwent Lodge in South Shields and Brook House in London all currently have the accreditation, and you can find out more about the homes on their home pages.
Andy Savage is our Food & Beverage Manager, himself a trained chef. “The importance of food and the kitchen team within care homes is undisputed. We are committed to providing the very best quality and service to our residents and our new initiative is a way of inspiring and motivating our kitchen teams to drive this.”
“Our cooks are very proud of what they do and we want to empower them to share their experience and learning with each other. This is a way of enabling that to happen.”
Supporting men in homes
Dedicated to helping older men live a healthier, active and fulfilling life
There are around 2.8 women for every man aged 65 and over living in care homes in the UK, which is why we feel it is important to ensure that our male residents do not feel isolated within their own homes.
Working with national charities and initiatives, such as AgeUK’s Older Men’s Network and Fit as a Fiddle, we have created an environment within our homes that focuses on the activity and interests of our men, from men-only social groups to physical activity sessions and interests.
We work closely with national charities and local organisations to provide extra skills and resources for residents and care staff.Find out more
A snapshot of life in one of our care homes, where food and activities are the cornerstones of our care.Find Out More
Read some of the positive feedback our homes receive from residents, their families and friends.Find Out More
Read some of our basic information here to help guide you through the care process.find out more