Following the incredible success of our Schools
Writing Competition earlier this year, we’re excited to be launching
next year’s competition and would like to invite all aspiring writers
aged between 10 and 13 to take part in our Dignity Action Day Writing
Competition for 2020.
The competition, which we’ve decided to turn into an annual event,
aims to promote awareness of everyone’s right to dignity, and is timed
to celebrate Dignity Action Day, a national event each February which highlights more respectful ways of behaving towards vulnerable people.
Beginning with an exciting Writing Workshop for all those who enter,
all competition entries will be read by three locally recognised writers
and editors, and trophies awarded to each of the top three entries and
the 1st place winner’s school.
Isolation among older generations is alarmingly
common. As many as 40% of older people still living in their own homes
report feelings of loneliness and boredom.
Upsetting as this is on an emotional level, isolation also has a
physical impact, significantly increasing the risk of poor healthin older people.
Numerous health problems are exacerbated by isolation and loneliness,
including an increased risk of falls, dementia and readmission to
hospital. The need to help older people remain involved and engaged
therefore needs to be a priority in care.
Residential care homes can play an important part in banishing loneliness and isolation
By removing many of the barriers experienced by people struggling to
cope on their own at home, residential care homes are in a unique
position to help motivate and engage older people by helping their
residents make new friends, reconnect with hobbies they enjoyed
previously, and experience something new.
Providing a stimulating atmosphere with people to talk to, activities
and events to enjoy, and an accessible environment and facilities, with
physical support on hand as needed, care homes are well placed to help
their residents make the most of the opportunities available.
How care homes can help older people avoid isolation
Promote a sense of purpose
Older people with a sense of purpose in their everyday activities are
less likely to experience depression and succumb to the negative
effects of social isolation. Helping people remain active in pursuing
their hobbies and interests, and maintaining a regular daily routine can
help them maintain their sense of purpose and keep them from becoming
isolated and lonely.
Address incontinence issues
For obvious reasons, anyone experiencing incontinence may be hesitant
to go out or become involved in activities and risks becoming isolated.
Addressing the issue and sorting out medication and supplies can help
reassure them and help restore confidence and self-esteem.
Facilitate hearing and vision tests
Problems with hearing or eyesight can lead people to start avoiding
social situations because of simple embarrassment or difficulties
communicating. Facilitating regular hearing and eyesight checks can be a
game changer. A new pair of glasses or a hearing aid may be all that’s
needed to improve social health.
Encourage dining with others
Eating with others is inherently social. Encouraging older people to
share a meal with others gives lots of opportunities for chat and social
engagement, but also has the added benefit of promoting better
nutrition which can be easily neglected by older people living alone.
There’s nothing like a hug. Research suggests that friendly gestures
such as hand-holding or hugging can bring comfort, lower stress and
promote feelings of well-being.
Mobility problems and lack of adequate transportation are obvious
causes of social isolation experienced by many older people living in
their own homes who are simply not able to get out. Providing
appropriate mobility equipment and opportunities for trips out, can make
a huge difference in helping maintain social connections and a healthy
sense of independence.