Yarmouth Claremont Lodge care home’s youth project

TWO generations will come together this Christmas when a Great Yarmouth dementia care home welcomes a project aimed at giving young people the opportunity to use their time constructively.

Over the festive period, residents at Claremont Lodge in Caister will be visited three times by members of the Right Direction project.

Run by Norfolk County Council, Right Direction provides activities for youngsters, aged between 12 and 16, who have been identified as needing extra support.

Christine Morgan, unit manager of Claremont Lodge, a home run by Healthcare Homes, said the visits would provide a real boost for the residents over Christmas. She said: “Over the three days, the group will be taking part in activities like arts and crafts and playing together on the Nintendo Wii. On the last day, we’ll have a lunch and a party.

“Visits like these are really important for people with dementia – they jog memories about their own youth and make them think about their children and grandchildren. They really enjoy spending time with young people – the two generations get on very well together.”

Right Direction youth worker Lauren Duffield said the visits would prove equally beneficial for the group members, who all attend Great Yarmouth High School.

She continued: “They know very little about dementia, so it will be really good for them to meet the residents of Claremont Lodge. Offering their time voluntarily during the holidays also gives them a real sense of pride and team spirit and it creates an impetus to carry on behaving well when they’re back at school.”

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Claremont Lodge, one of a portfolio of 23 homes run by Healthcare Homes, is one of the few specialist dementia units in the region. The home is situated in the same grounds as Claremont House, which offers nursing care for the elderly.

Healthcare Homes chief executive, Richard Clough said the visit from the Right Direction group to Claremont Lodge was firmly supported by the company.

He said: “Residents with dementia really benefit from activities and new faces. I’m sure they will thrive on taking part in tasks with the young people from Great Yarmouth High School. We are very happy to support community groups like Right Direction as they do sterling work for young people in Norfolk.”

For more information about Claremont Lodge, please visit www.healthcarehomes.co.uk