'Mini Olympics' fun and games to brighten up lockdown life for Swaffham care home
Care home staff thought up a creative way of enabling residents to have some much-needed fun during the coronavirus lockdown.
A 'Mini Olympics' was held at Holmwood House Care Centre in Swaffham to coincide with VE Day celebrations.
Whilst wearing PPE (personal protective equipment) masks, residents and staff took part in a variety of activities including a 'plum and spoon race', a 'three-legged box carry' as well as a racing while carrying water.
Holmwood House is a 59-bed care home which provides palliative care to residents with terminal illnesses such as dementia. A staff member said half of the residents had to stay in their beds during the 'Mini Olympics' due to their conditions.
As a result, the staff could not be "off the floor" for too long during the fun activities.
Facilities manager Barry Boughen said: "It is a very worrying time but the Holmwood team are a terrific bunch who all work hard and pull together no matter what. We are all different people but while we are at work we are a family and that family really matters to us and everyone we care for.
"As our dear residents are having very little contact with the outside world we are doing our utmost to bring joy and laughter into their lives."
He continued: "We held a Holmwood Heroes Mini Olympics which brought fun and raucous laughter for residents and staff alike. During this current and harrowing time our residents do need laughter and, believe me, so do we.
"The games were silly but they were hilarious. Racing whilst wearing face masks wasn't easy and there was much cheating during the 'Plum and Spoon' race but who cares? It was all part of the fun.
"All contestants went away puffed but with bottles of alcohol to soothe their weariness."
Mr Boughen said the home is well-stocked with PPE supplies and the home was "well-prepared" for lockdown by closing two weeks before government guidelines.
As a result, the home has had no outbreaks of coronavirus so far.
Mr Boughen said: "Everyone is just working hard. A lot of us are concerned but we have had an amount of luck as well. We have not lost one and there have been no cases.
"We have done our best to maintain social distancing as much as possible."
He also described the care home's team as "a big family". Located on White Cross Road in the market town, the home has been supporting residents-including those with dementia-for many years.
Staff were pleased to be sent a cake from Norwich City FC shareholder and celebrity chef Delia Smith for VE Day. This was well-received in addition to various other sweet treats baked at the home for the occasion.