Christmas is always a very jolly time at Ridgeway Rise Care Home in Swindon. Everyone goes the extra mile to make festivities special for the residents, team, relatives, and the wonderful community that we are a part of.
We've all been very busy at Ridgeway Rise Care Home as every day around Christmas was packed with enriching activities and entertainment.
Christmas Tree Decorating
We began our Christmas festivities by decorating the home in preparation for the Christmas season, and residents were only too happy to get involved.
Residents participated in decorating the big Christmas tree at the reception. Everyone gathered around to place ornaments, sing carols, and indulge in some mince pies and mulled wine.
For a lot of people, this time of year evokes many happy and special memories that they previously shared with family. Decorating a Christmas tree is a tradition that many of our residents share. It's important to us that we do all we can to enable our residents to keep hold of their traditions, which is also an important part of reminiscence.
Days Out in the Community
A few of our residents got to experience the festiveness in our local community as they visited the local church for a coffee morning, where they enjoyed a hot beverage, a festive treat, and the company of others in our community.
We also took a special trip to Marks & Spencer's for a spot of Christmas shopping, and our residents very much enjoyed taking a look at all the decorations and crackers and getting into the festive spirit. Our local community has so much to offer, and it was lovely for the residents to take a look around the shops and cafés.
Every year we try to do something for the community to make festivities even more enjoyable. During COVID we set up winter Wonderland outside Ridgeway Rise for the neighbours’ children to enjoy, and last year we had a Christmas photo booth.
This year, since COVID restrictions were easing, we set up Santa's Grotto at the reception for our residents, team, and visitors. Our own Activity Coordinator Alla painted a picture, and we also had a sleigh and a fireplace.
It brought that extra sparkle of Christmas magic to our home. We were very fortunate to receive lots of donations from local shops with decorations and props for the Grotto, which again shows that community spirit during this special time.
We were also very kindly gifted huge hampers filled with goodies from 3 funeral Directors which went toward our team’s raffle and we set up our very popular tombola to support fundraising for our 2023 activities programme.
Festive Music Sessions
At Ridgeway Rise, we try to incorporate as many activities as possible that involve the younger generation as well as different members of the local community. We were very fortunate to receive a visit from the U3A group called Merribells, who gave an unforgettable concert on the bells. It really put everyone in a festive mood.
Our kitchen assistant Bonnie also treated everyone to an afternoon of carol singing and we also had the pleasure of welcoming some of the younger children from the community into our home, who also sang beautifully for our residents and staff. The children from local schools and scouts groups also brought in Christmas cards for our residents over the course of December, which really brought a smile to our resident's faces.
We couldn’t have Christmas without a proper Christmas party for all of our residents, staff, and loved ones. Our team prepared DIY crackers with little treats, we played fun games including pin the red nose on the reindeer and had a visit from Santa himself.
On Christmas Day itself, the party continued as residents and team members received presents, had a wonderful Christmas meal with a few festive tipples, and spent time laughing and chatting away with one another.
Christmas at Ridgeway Rise is the time to reflect on the past year, of coming together in celebration and enjoying every moment. We hope you all had a lovely Christmas and we wish you a very Happy New Year.