Audrey brings life, energy and great gardening skills to FitzRoy

14th August 2020

New resident Audrey has brought ‘life and energy’ into FitzRoy’s registered care home in East Sussex, despite moving into her new home at the beginning of a nationwide lockdown.

Dean, deputy manager of Linden Cottage, said: “We all went into lockdown on the Monday and Audrey moved in on the Tuesday. Everyone was really uncertain as to whether it was still going ahead or not because of lockdown, but I contacted the service and carried out risk assessments and we worked together to move her in as smoothly as possible. We made sure to wash all her belongings once she had moved in to protect her and the other people we support.

“It was a really difficult time for Audrey to move, suddenly she had all new faces around her, her family couldn’t help her move because of lockdown and she was being told she couldn’t go to her day service or go shopping because of coronavirus. But, despite all the challenges and sudden changes in her routine, Audrey settled in really quickly. She developed tremendous relationships with all the staff so quickly, and the staff made sure she felt at home by making her room as cosy as possible.

“Unfortunately, only four weeks after her move, we had a phone call to let us know Audrey’s mum had passed away. The whole team wanted to do everything we could to help Audrey through the loss. We researched a lot of resources to help explain what had happened to Audrey, and we made sure we helped to keep her active and busy but also gave her time to grieve.

“Because of this Audrey became very anxious about her dad and wanted to see him. I found out that her dad’s room in his care home was on the ground floor looking out into the garden, so we managed to arrange for Audrey to see him and chat to him through the window over a cup of tea. Just being able to do that for Audrey was brilliant, and she was so much less anxious as soon as she was able to see him.

Audrey has really brought life to our service, she is so active and has really taken the reins of our garden. She’s grown tomatoes, potatoes, lettuce, she’s out there all the time and she’s taught our team a lot about gardening! She is getting on really well with the other residents, and she is so inspiring. Everyone is benefiting from her energy and I am so proud of my team for making her move so seamless.

“The team have been so amazing during the whole of lockdown, I can’t thank them enough. Even now when they can do more because lockdown has eased, they are still being so careful because they want to protect the people we support. They encompass all FitzRoy’s values and we couldn’t have got through this without them.”

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