The Orders of St John Care Trust is a specialist in dementia care, offering an innovative and practical approach to caring for people living with dementia, and providing support for the family and friends of those moving into long term dementia care.
Nearly 850,000 people in the United Kingdom have a diagnosis of Dementia. We understand that living with dementia brings its own challenges and each person’s experience is unique; however, we are here to ensure everyone can still enjoy an independent and fulfilling life. We feel it is really important to get to know the people we’re supporting and to ensure that their home environment is designed to be dementia-friendly. We focus on what people can do rather than what they can’t, providing what is needed at that moment in time.
How our specialist nurses support those with dementia?
We are proud to be one of the few care providers to employ our own Admiral Nurses. Supported by Dementia UK, these are specialist nurses who can offer:
- A skilled assessment, to ensure the needs of the family, carers and residents living with dementia are met.
- Support groups for relatives and people in the local community.
- Emotional support, practical advice, information and skills to help those living with dementia feel more comfortable.
- Expert guidance and support provided to our care team.
- Write and lead our dementia related training which is endorsed by Dementia UK.
How we support people with dementia?
All of our employees are offered dementia specific training, to help them understand the needs of a person living with dementia. This means our teams are well equipped to understand and support people’s individual situations.
All Homes have a Dementia Lead who is responsible for making sure that everyone is up-to-date with the latest learning on dementia. They champion the best quality care and attend specialist workshops with our Admiral Nurses and share learnings with colleagues to maintain best practice. Some of our homes specialise in caring for people with the advanced stages of dementia, where we employ managers with a special interest and expertise in this area to help enhance resident’s lives.
Our care is centred around each individual, and their unique likes and dislikes. We do this by finding out people’s life story and individually tailoring care plans. This also means we really get to know everyone so we can chat and help them feel reassured.
“My Mum has dementia and the Admiral Nurse here has been very valuable to me. With her help I’ve been able to understand and communicate more with my mum and my love’s grown for her.”
How do we make the move into one of our dementia care homes as smooth as possible?
Moving to a new home can be a big change for anyone but particularly for people living with dementia. To make a smoother transition and help people feel more comfortable in their new environment we’ve created an approach to help the care team get to know people better based on the principles of Life Story work from Dementia UK.
Life Story work is a collaborative and on-going activity where we get to know about a resident’s past life events by, developing their biography . We use it to understand a resident’s past experiences and how they coped with changes in their life and to shape their care
How do we care for those in our care?
We support residents to keep their identity and interests, by helping them to continue with living skills such as baking, sandwich making and household; enabling people to be the domestic “goddess” that they’ve always been!
- Residents are encouraged to use their creative and practice skills in arts and crafts, helping in the garden or hanging out the washing.
- We promote the use of objects of attachment such as dolls, blankets and other items. Attachment Therapy is another way we provide comfort to people living with dementia. We also have our own Paro seals which are social robots designed to enhance the interactions with residents living with dementia.
- Animals as Therapy: We have visiting Therapy Dogs in most of our homes; some have their own pets such as dogs, cats, rabbits and chickens. There may also be an option for people to bring their own pet to come and live with them.
- We have sensory areas that provide stimulation using lights, colours, textures and other sensory equipment to enjoy and engage with.
- Many of our Homes have Magic Tables which stimulate activities, engagement and wellbeing of the residents who use them. They are interactive tables which have age appropriate games or activities and encourage movement as well as social stimulation..
- There are themed areas or destinations to find as people walk around in their daily routine.
How are our specialist dementia care homes designed?
In our home designs, we include small households so that residents consistently see the same people most days, and it feels more like a traditional home. In our older homes, we have adapted and refurbished different areas in specific themes, for example, an old-fashioned tearoom, an indoor potting shed or a beach scene. This not only provides greater variety but also helps bring back fond memories.
We encourage people to maintain their day-to-day skills and continue their usual lifestyle, giving them a purpose for getting up in the morning. We use colour and other visual cues, with signage and tactile decoration to help find their way around the home. People can bring as many familiar items as they wish; a favourite cushion, a bedspread, treasured ornaments and photographs - so that they really feel at home with us. We believe we’re providing a home for life and we will do all we can to make it feel like home.
How we can help!
Looking for more information about Dementia care? We have created our Dementia Care magazine to help provide you with more detail around Dementia care and the ways we can help.
Click here to read our Dementia Care Magazine.
If you are interested in one of our services then feel free to get in touch and one of our friendly team members will be happy to help and answer any questions you may have.