Meadowlark Care Home, Forres wins Greatest Resident Engagement prize in Renaissance Care Group gardening contest
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RESIDENTS at a local care home have been using their green fingers to compete in a nationwide gardening competition.
Marking National Gardening Week, staff at Meadowlark helped spruce up their outdoor space while competing with 14 other Renaissance Care Group homes, all transforming areas of garden or entrance way into something bright and cheerful.
Renaissance communications manager, Kirstene Feenan, confirmed the care provider regularly comes up with creative activities for residents to enjoy and benefit from.
She said: “Our care homes residents, family and staff had great fun entering the competition.
“They also learned and shared new skills - the gardens have never looked more loved.
“We wanted to create the opportunity to reconnect with loved ones so we are so pleased to see this competition has enabled friends and family to enjoy quality time with the residents.
“Those who did not take part have commented on how nice it has been to see happy people around the homes once more.”
Renaissance Care initially initiated the event to celebrate the benefits nature and the great outdoors can bring to health and wellbeing.
Green fingered staff, residents and families battled it out to win the titles of best transformation, greatest resident engagement, greatest community engagement and greatest resident inclusion and creativity’.
Meadowlark Care Home won the Greatest Resident Engagement accolade.
Meadowlark now has a mini croft where residents are growing root vegetables to be used for a warming soup later this year.
All of the residents were invited to help with but Gordie Stewart and activities co-ordinator Derra Kew took the lead.
Derra said: “The residents taught me about growing vegetables and plants.
“Gardening was never an interest of mine but seeing how much they enjoy it has really made me keen to learn more.
“It has been great hearing ideas for the garden and it is going to be a lot of fun bringing them to life over the next few months.”
Nan Preston, Annie Watson, Jenny Kennedy, Evelyn Masson, Sue Swanson, Hilda Prentice were the other residents who mainly supported the activity.
Shallots, tatties, herbs – some of exotic variety – tomatoes, strawberries and cucumber have been planted.
Derra said: “Residents used gardening magazines to pick out the flowers they liked.
“Pictures were then cut from them to help manager Casey and I get the correct things from the garden centres.
“We’ve been working on the garden over the course of a few days to plan and plant, now we take turns to tend to it.”
She finished: “The residents are delighted with winning and are looking forward to enjoying the vegetables once everything has grown.
“Gordie had a fantastic time and Nan reports enjoyed her self-entitled role of chief weeder!”
Meadowlark is situated in Mannachie Road, providing person-centred care and support to its elderly residents.
Meadowlark’s team, headed by home manager Casey Whittaker, delivers care to residents with varying needs, ranging from personal care to specialised diagnosis.