A care home in Bellshill has signed up to an innovative project that aims to further widen knowledge and understanding of dementia.
The ‘Pledge Tree’ is a creative work of art located within the reception of Bupa’s Hatton Lea Care Home .
It aims to encourage staff, carers and family members to write down their thoughts and feelings — or pledges — on dementia on leaf-shaped pieces of paper and pin them to it.
The pledge tree has been devised by Dementia Carer Voices, which is managed by the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland, as part of their campaign to make a difference to the lives of people with dementia and their carers.
The Hatton Lea tree was unveiled at the home by Tommy Whitelaw, the charity’s Project Engagement Lead.
Tommy, started his involvement with Dementia Carer Voices after he spent six years caring for his mother who lived with the condition.
Since then he has visiting more than 500 care homes, hospitals and universities to highlight the need for greater awareness on dementia.
Tommy said: “Bupa’s work in dementia care is already widely acknowledged as being leading-edge, particularly its excellent staff training and the pioneering ‘Dementia Ambassadors’ programme.
“Hatton Lea’s new pledge tree is a way to further improve understanding of dementia care in our local communities.
“It offers a means to showcase pledges that can help to ensure that carers and people with dementia have their voices heard, and their rights and caring role are recognised by those who play a part in the journey.”
Caroline York, unit manager at the home, added: “Tommy’s commitment to the pledge tree concept is extremely inspirational.
“The tree itself has really brightened up the reception area, but more so, we are sure it will encourage our staff to continue their already unthinking commitment to provide the very best in dementia care for our residents.”
Back in February Hatton Lea was selected as the fourth Scottish demonstrator site for the Focus on Dementia Specialist Unit Improvement Programme.
The programme is a component of the Scottish Dementia Strategy, which outlined the key priorities for improving the delivery of care and support to people with dementia and their carers.