Over the past 2 years the staff and pupils of St Eanswythe’s Primary School have become firm friends with everyone here at Pelham House. The frequent visits from their pupils were always a highlight of the day for many of our residents and their efforts throughout Lockdown to stay in touch and keep everyone’s spirits up has been truly heart-warming.
We’re therefore both touched and very grateful to receive this letter from them now to express “how amazing” they think our staff are ….
“As a school we have worked with Pelham House for the last two years. Their amazing care for each of their residents as individuals has really impressed us. What is brilliant about their care home is that although their residents have dementia staff make a huge effort to ensure that they are not defined by their illness. They go to huge lengths to ensure that every resident is treated as an individual and they care so much, listening to their needs and desires. They run their home in a way that we strive to run our school with love and passion for the individual human that we are lucky enough to be given charge of.
One of our favourite things that they put in place for their residents was the ‘Make a dream come true’ activities which enabled residents to do some amazing things such as drive a horse and carriage, have visits from the RNLI and go up in an aeroplane. Each activity has been tailored to the residents dreams or previous jobs. Before the current crisis there was a plethora of visitors and activities for the residents to partake in daily.
As a school, we have been taking groups of children to read with the residents on a weekly basis. We have also taken our school choir in regularly to sing to them and with them. Enjoyment is the word that springs to mind because that is what our children gained from the experience. In addition children have been given the opportunity to form firm friendships with older generation.
We are only able to take 12 children each week and they have ranged from 4 to 11 years old. All children are desperate to be chosen. After a visit they have spoken about how privileged they feel to make someone’s day brighter. The atmosphere in the home was always a positive and welcoming one. The staff have also been amazingly welcoming to both our children and our staff. They have done all in their power to make their visits a positive experience.
During this crisis the staff jobs have become much harder. Trying to explain to residents with dementia why there are no longer any visitors has been heart breaking for the staff. The photos, letters and videos that our children have sent have helped but are not the same in any way.
We just wanted to celebrate the staff at Pelham House and the wonderful work that they have been doing in terrible circumstances.
Miss S Laws and Mrs O’Callaghan
St Eanswythe’s CE Primary School