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Oomph! Wellness

Making wishes come true at blackpool tower ballroom

By | Out and about

A special Oomph! trip enabled Lostock Lodge Care Home to make a wish come true for one of their residents as part of the Country Court Care ‘Make a Wish’ initiative.

Residents at the care home in Lostock Gralam have been discussing what they would wish for, Bill said how much he enjoyed weekends in Blackpool with his wife and he decided he would love to go back to Blackpool Tower Ballroom. The team at Lostock Lodge Care Home thought that this would make a great day out, so he and three other lucky residents were sent a personal invitation.

Bill and wife Anne were regular visitors to the world-famous ballroom dancing venue and enjoyed both the dancing and the organ music synonymous with the ballroom. Bill’s daughter Alison explains…

“He loves to dance so much, he and my mum went there regularly for weekends and danced in the Tower Ballroom. I do know he was particularly looking forward to the organ music which he loves, he used to be a keen keyboard player himself.”

The Lostock Lodge residents were treated to a delicious afternoon tea and enjoyed watching the dancers on the dancefloor. Much to Bill’s delight there was an organist playing live and Bill took to the floor for a short spin around the dancefloor too.

“Our ‘Make a Wish’ initiative has enabled us to make out trips and outings much more meaningful and personal to each individual, Bill had a fantastic day” said Katy Viner, Customer Relations Manager at Lostock Lodge Care Home.

Oomph! are working in partnership with Country Court Care to take residents out on regular minibus trips to a wide range of local destinations, including Blue Planet Aquarium, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton and the Sloane Square Christmas lights.

Belong partners with Oomph! to adopt ‘whole team’ approach to wellbeing

By | Community

We have partnered with Belong, a leading UK care organisation, to extend the wellbeing and activities programmes in place across its seven care villages.

The partnership has seen Oomph! roll out its Wellbeing Leadership programme to 50 household leads and Experience Co-ordinators, as well as providing resource packs to promote a more diverse and creative approach to activities.

Belong’s Chief Operating Officer, Stacey McCann, said: “Enabling people to lead the lives they choose is fundamental to our vision and we are always striving towards a more person-centred approach.

“ At Belong, we promise a varied programme of activities and exercise for all our customers and recognised that we needed to get the whole team on board to deliver this, and to ensure our provision is adapted to each person’s choice and ability.  Oomph!’s programme offers a refreshing approach that goes way beyond exercise and has given us the opportunity to enhance the way we involve all our colleagues in creating meaningful experiences for our customers.”

As well as training, the programme also includes a series of skills workshops, including Oomph! Create, which has been designed in partnership with The Lightbox Gallery, who provide specialist art programmes for older adults. The workshop focuses on building skills in three different artistic mediums – painting, collage and sculpture, while further workshops will focus on culture, nature and sport.

Feedback from Belong colleagues has been excellent, with one support worker, Belong Wigan’s Gina Bamber, commenting: “The training sessions were really fun and informative, encouraging us to take a fresh look at the way we think about activity on the households, and to drive best practice as a result.”

Taking a whole-team approach to activities, Oomph!’s training focuses on ensuring every member of Belong has the skills to provide fresh and varied exercise and activities that residents love. Emphasis is also placed on creating person-centred plans that are sustained and recorded, so that providers can demonstrate to the regulator that they are meeting and exceeding activity requirements.

Ben Allen, Oomph’s CEO and Founder, said: “Oomph! is delighted to be working with the Belong team. It is a privilege to be an integral part of the organisation’s wellbeing provision. We will work in partnership to drive innovation and participation across the communities and are excited to be adding further fun and engagement to customer activities!”

Goal! Resident wish kicked off with trip to Notts County Football Club

By | Out and about

New Care has been getting out and about on Oomph! trips. One recent trip for The Grand Care Centre scored a goal with residents, who went to Notts County Football Club.

The trip was intended to build friendships between the male resident attendees away from the home, and fulfil one resident’s wish of visiting the location.

The group went out for a meal first, before enjoying a personal guided tour by sporting legend Les Bradd, Notts County’s all time leading goal scorer!

A member of staff at The Grand Care Centre commented, “The residents said it was a great experience, as many had played football in their younger years and it brought back lovely memories.”

Another member of staff said, “[It was a] fantastic day out. All the residents had a fabulous day. It was the first time two of the residents had been inside a football ground, but they were very interested and would recommend to other residents.”

Oomph! are working in partnership with New Care to take residents out on regular minibus trips to a wide range of local destinations, including Woolaton Park, National memorial Arboretum, Blue Diamond Garden Centre and Stonebridge City Farm. You can find out more about the partnership here.

Formula 1 fan and care home resident “thrilled to bits” to recieve photobook and momento

By | Out and about

Country Court Care homes have been going on regular Oomph! trips, and as a result of this, our drivers (or Conductors), are really getting to know the residents at the homes. A recent trip for Lostock Lodge has had an unexpected outcome for one resident, who has been gifted momentos after the home’s Oomph! Conductor, Bill, discovered her passion for Formula 1… 

Bill, Oomph! Conductor, commented, “On my last visit to Lostock, I spent a while chatting with Sheila and Brian Yates, and it turns out that Sheila is a keen Formula 1 fan and also a Lewis Hamilton fan. To surprise her, I filled a small photo album with 24 shots of Lewis Hamilton which I have taken on my many F1 trips to circuits all over the world. I also took along a small souvenir of a tiny relic of Lewis Hamilton’s leathers mounted on a lanyard.

The response was amazing, with tears of joy in her eyes, and her husband was extremely grateful. Sheila looks through the photos regularly and is still wearing the lanyard I gave her – it makes my efforts so rewarding.”

Sheila developed an interest in the sport on a trip to Austria, where she saw the Red Bull Headquarters.

Brain, Sheila’s husband, commented, “Sheila is thrilled to bits to receive these fabulous gifts. It was a very special moment for Sheila and she will treasure her gifts. She is absolutely delighted and can’t thank Bill enough, as he had no reason to go to all that trouble. Sheila has been through so much, that this is really special for her.”

Oomph! are working in partnership with Country Court Care to take residents out on regular minibus trips to a wide range of local destinations, including Blue Planet Aquarium, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton and the Sloane Square Christmas lights. You can find out more about the partnership here.

5 Top Tips for getting your care home creative

By | Care Home

With the launch of our Oomph! Create workshop, Heather, from The Lightbox Museum and Gallery, has some top tips for bringing art into your care setting:

Enjoy the process of making rather than the finished piece.

It’s great to have lots of beautiful work to put up, but also the enjoyment that is created through making should not be underestimated. Not everything has to look like a Turner painting! It can be the first time they have spent 20 minutes sitting and painting, or the colours that they love, that make the artwork so good.

Use what you see.

Sometimes we have an abundance of one item that can be used in many different ways. For example, a kitchen roll tube can be used to make a multitude of craft projects, such as owls or puppets, or they can even be used to print with to make a lovely circle pattern. If you have a garden, you could use leaves and twigs to create nature inspired collages.

It’s not always about making.

Some people like to know more about the artists, rather than make themselves. Print out biographies and share some of your residents’ knowledge. One of them may have been to an exhibition or show that you are talking about.

Try to use good quality materials as far as possible.

If you want to paint, try to provide the best you can afford. There is nothing worse than painting in watercolours and the paper being too thin so it wrinkles! Use card if you prefer so that it has a bit of weight to it. Acrylics are good paints to use too, they make a nice block colour (but note that any mess can be tricky to wash out of clothes).

Create a gallery wall.

Showcase what you have been doing in your care home! You don’t need big fancy frames, you could have a pin board which changes regularly. It gives residents pride in their work and also means that their friends and families can see what they’re up to.

To date, 127 homes have participated in the Oomph! Create workshop, with 208 staff members taking part across the UK. 98% would recommend the workshop, and 77% said it was even better than expected. Our next workshop in the series is based on nature, encouraging residents to get outdoors and appreciate nature, as well as bringing the outdoors in – Oomph! Nature will be launching in March, so watch this space!

Partnership with Arthritis Action to improve strength, balance and co-ordination

By | Community

We have teamed up with UK Charity, Arthritis Action, to deliver exercise programmes designed specifically for older adults with arthritis.

For the first time, a collaboration between Oomph! and Arthritis Action has brought together experts in arthritis, with experts in delivering exercise programmes to older adults.

The new programmes have three levels of intensity, and target areas of the body commonly affected by arthritis: the hip, knee and spine. These programmes aim to improve participants’ strength, balance and co-ordination, with a focus on regaining, developing and maintaining physical independence.

Launching this month on various Oomph! platforms, the content will be available on the Oomph! app. Staff in community venues – such as retirement villages, sheltered housing, and day centres – that have been trained by Oomph! to deliver fun and engaging exercise classes, will now be able to view the programmes and use these to alleviate the symptoms of arthritis for class participants.

The programmes follow demand from Oomph! Instructors for strength and balance content, and equally the desire to provide relevant and fresh content that will improve the health of participants whilst still continuing to engage them.

Shantel Irwin, CEO of Arthritis Action, “We are delighted to have partnered with Oomph! to develop an exercise programme for people with musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions. Our aim is to build people’s strength and confidence to exercise safely, and are pleased to have been able to share our knowledge and expertise on arthritis and MSK conditions.

Oomph!, experts in delivering activity programmes to the elderly, are best placed to deliver this exciting new programme across their networks in the UK. We very much look forward to measuring the impact of this programme on participants and are particularly excited about building people’s strength, confidence and ability to get out of a chair and achieve physical independence.”

Ben Allen, CEO and Founder of Oomph!, “We are excited to be partnering with Arthritis Action to create content specifically focused around strength and balance for those with Arthritis. It is vital that we provide resources that Instructors value and that will have a substantial impact on the physical mobility of participants – the partnership provides the perfect opportunity to do this.”

Country Court Care gets some Oomph! for their residents!

By | Care Home

“Another great day! Buzzing atmosphere, happy residents, happy carers. Well enjoyed by all despite the cold weather!” One member of staff commented after a recent trip.

We have partnered with Country Court Care, a leading UK Care Group, to deliver awesome exercise classes and creative activities for residents, as well as engaging trips out.

A pilot project has been agreed where 4 homes have been embracing the exercise and activity training and 8 homes have been going out to local destinations.

Taking a whole-home approach to activities, staff in 4 Country Court Care Homes have been trained in our Wellbeing Leadership programme. This ensures that they are equipped with everything they need to create and sustain a person-centred plan of varied exercise and activities that residents love. The training is tailored to each home, and focuses on meeting and exceeding regulator requirements.

The programme also includes a series of skills workshops, including Oomph! Create, which has been developed in collaboration with The Lightbox Art Gallery & Museum in Woking. The workshop focuses on teaching staff the fundamentals of sketching, painting, sculpting and collage, and how they can practically apply these. Further workshops will focus on culture and nature.

One member of staff commented, “I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of Oomph! training and look forward to trying it with residents.”

Additionally, engaging days out to a range of destinations are running for 8 Country Court Care homes, with added value and variety to trip experiences created through partnerships with the National Trust and HQ Theatres.

The trips aim to connect residents to the people and places that matter most to them – Country Court Care trips have previously included unexpected locations, such as the Blue Planet Aquarium, the Royal Pavilion in Brighton and the Sloane Square Christmas lights.

A member of staff said, “The driver is brilliant, he always gives that bit extra. It makes a huge difference having the transport all organised. The residents love getting out and enjoying fresh air.”

Alykhan Kachra, Managing Director at Country Court Care, said: “Both residents and staff have given very positive feedback on Oomph!’s exciting and fresh approach in our pilot care homes. We are delighted to see our partnership enabling activities and exercise that are meaningful and will enrich the lives of our residents”

Ben Allen, Oomph!’s CEO, said: “Oomph! are excited to be in partnership with Country Court Care – it is a privilege to be an integral part of the organisation’s wellbeing provision and we are excited to help ensure that residents at Country Court Care homes live a full life, for life.”

Kingsley Healthcare gets even more Oomph! with programme roll out!

By | Care Home

Following the success of the Wellbeing Programme in 13 Kingsley Healthcare homes, a further 12 homes are due to be trained to deliver awesome exercise classes and creative activities for their residents, with the previous homes continuing into their second year.

Taking a whole-home approach to activities, staff in 12 Kingsley Healthcare homes will be trained in Oomph!’s Wellbeing Leadership programme. This will ensure that they are equipped with everything they need to create and sustain a person-centred plan of varied exercise and activities that residents love. The training is tailored to each home, and focuses on meeting and exceeding regulator requirements.

There has already been plenty of impact from the homes who have been trained – for example, Sharston House has set up a befriending scheme to pair up people with similar interests. One pair enjoy playing the piano together, with a glass of sherry during the visit, and another befriender who is a bee keeper recently dropped off homemade jam for a resident’s birthday.

At another home, one of the team heard about a resident whose husband was a bricklayer, so took her around the home’s new build project to have a look and meet the foreman.

One member of staff commented on the benefit that she had seen in the home, “Looking at the last report gave us some insight as to what was missing and what needed improvement. It is very helpful to have a team behind you with a wealth of knowledge and experience to aid improvement in our delivery and improve our skill set!”

Another said that, “Oomph! has a marvellous impact on our residents. It’s smiles all around, lovely to see and be a part of.”

The programme also includes a series of skills workshops, including Oomph! Create, which has been developed in collaboration with The Lightbox Art Gallery & Museum in Woking. The workshop focuses on teaching staff the fundamentals of sketching, painting, sculpting and collage, and how they can practically apply these. Further workshops will focus on culture and nature.

Kingsley Healthcare’s Operations Director, Debbie McGovern, said, “Oomph! training has been tremendously productive for both our staff and residents. We are committed to making life as interesting and enjoyable as possible for our residents and are delighted to be extending our partnership to the benefit of more of our homes.”

Ben Allen, Oomph’s CEO and Founder, said: “Oomph! could not be more excited to continue working with the team at Kingsley, to expand our impact throughout the whole portfolio of homes. It has been a privilege to add further fun and engagement to resident activities – and we’re looking forward to building upon this momentum in the upcoming months!”

Sanctuary Care gets some Oomph! with “life-changing” new partnership

By | Care Home

85-year-old resident Colleen Keen, who brands herself as an ‘Oomph! Girl’ said: “The classes are liberating. I used to struggle with circulation, especially in my ankles but now the classes have really improved this. They really are life-changing.”

We have partnered with Sanctuary Care, a leading UK Care Group, to deliver awesome exercise classes and creative activities for residents.

Taking a whole-home approach to activities, staff across a number of care homes run by Sanctuary Care, have been trained in our Wellbeing Leadership programme. This ensures that they are equipped with everything they need to create and sustain a person-centred plan of varied exercise and activities that residents love. The training is tailored to each home, and focuses on meeting and exceeding regulator requirements.

The programme also includes a series of skills workshops, including Oomph! Create, which has been developed in collaboration with The Lightbox Art Gallery & Museum in Woking. The workshop focuses on teaching staff the fundamentals of sketching, painting, sculpting and collage, and how they can practically apply these. Further workshops will focus on culture and nature.

Jennifer Simpson from Sanctuary Care’s Nunthorpe Oaks Residential Care Home in North Yorkshire said: “I cannot put into words how fantastic these care home activities are, not only are they lots of fun for residents and staff but more importantly we are supporting residents to be more sociable, independent, active and alert, as well as being healthier in the best possible way!”

Sheila O’Connor, Director of Operations – Sanctuary Care added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Oomph! and it’s exciting training programme. The support Oomph! has provided has helped to enrich the lives of our residents and further develop staff in our homes to ensure they continue to deliver the best quality of care to our residents.”

Ben Allen, Oomph!’s CEO, said: “Oomph! are excited to be in partnership with Sanctuary Care, to be an integral part of the organisation’s wellbeing provision and to help ensure that residents at Sanctuary Care homes live a full life, for life.”

Falls at Victoria Nursing reduced significantly… with regular Oomph! exercise sessions

By | Care Home

Falls have reduced significantly at Victoria Nursing Group’s Chartwell, within 6 months of beginning Oomph! exercise sessions in the home.

Between August 2017 and January 2018, the home recorded 17 falls, which has subsequently reduced to 4 in the period between February 2018 and July 2018. There is the same resident group in home, so the number has not been driven by a change in resident dependency.

The home attributes some of the reduction in falls to Oomph! exercise sessions, which incorporate fun and gameplay into seated physical activity classes. The home runs 2 sessions per week, with 6 or 7 residents participating each time – equating to 10 individuals getting active per week.

Falls at the home are measured through use of falls protocol. When a fall occurs, a form is completed, which then goes on to the system for Manager to investigate. Victoria Nursing Group’s Care Quality Director, Emma, will then assess all of the homes each month to determine number of falls and suggest a variety actions to reduce the amount of falls within the home.

“Falls have definitely been reduced – regular physical activity has led to people being more mobile and stronger. There is also increased staff confidence when supporting people thanks to the Oomph! training.” said Emma, the Care Quality Director.

The impact of the exercise sessions is clear to see in the home. One resident used to be unsteady on his feet, experiencing multiple falls, but since Oomph! started these falls have reduced and the resident has been able to walk into the garden with an improved level of confidence.

Ben, CEO and Founder of Oomph!, said, “I’m delighted to see the impact that regular exercise sessions have been having in the home. It’s fantastic that residents are becoming more confident and mobile, and as a result are experiencing a higher quality of life. A huge well done to the team at Chartwell!”

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