19 May 2015
A Community of Care: 25 Years at Cartref Annwyl Fan
Cartref Annwyl Fan, our care home in Ammanford, will this week celebrate 25 years since it first opened.
The popular home, which welcomed its first residents in 1990, will recognise those who have contributed to its success by having a party for residents, relatives and members of the local community. Guests will be served champagne and canapés upon arrival and will enjoy the musical talents of a professional harpist and the Llandybie Male Voice Choir.
Cartref Annwyl Fan, which has been recognised at the Wales Care Awards, was acquired by Hallmark Care Homes 12 years ago but was originally purpose built by Mr B Llewellyn whose daughter has worked at the home ever since!
During this time Cartref Annwyl Fan has seen a lot of changes in terms of the facilities on offer to residents. The home has developed a bar, cinema, shop, hair salon and a café called ‘The Coffee Cup’ – an area for residents and their relatives to chat in an informal setting.
Constant innovation has been crucial, explains the home’s General Manager Adele Williams.
“As Hallmark has evolved as a leading care provider, we have evolved as a home. We have introduced new facilities, design elements, and colour schemes. The tastes and needs of our residents change and therefore, it is important as a care home that we moved with the times.
“Some care homes can look clinical and uninviting. We didn’t want anyone to have that impression of our home”.
Adele, who will celebrate 10 years working at the home this year, added: “At Cartref Annwyl Fan, we create a homely atmosphere by adding a lot of personal touches such as flowers, candles, and photographs. Something as simple as plumping the cushions every morning, as you would in your own home, can make a big difference.”
The care at Cartref Annwyl Fan is relationship-centred. This means that the individual needs of each resident are at the very heart of the care provided. One way the team deliver this is by introducing activities tailored towards the individual as well as engaging group activities. They also ensure the transition into care is as smooth as possible when the resident enters the home by helping them to keep their daily routine. Some residents’ routine requirements will be to simply tune in to their favourite radio show or TV programme every day, others will want to pop out to a weekly coffee morning at the church hall they’ve been going to for years. Outdoor activities are also very important, as is helps the resident to feel less isolated in the home.
Adele said: “The care at Cartref is geared towards each individual’s needs. Our team work extremely hard to make sure that each resident in the home feels special and part of the Cartref family.”
“For instance, for some of our residents, Welsh is their first language. The team have catered to this by learning to read, write and speak in Welsh at an advanced level. This is so the team can hold a conversation with our residents but they can also write our activity schedule in Welsh and put on films in the cinema with Welsh subtitles.”
One highlight for Adele in the last 25 years includes; being recognised as ‘National Care Home Manager of the Year’ at the National Care Awards. She said: “We are the oldest care home in the group, therefore we have not always had the same facilities as the other homes but this hasn’t stopped us from achieving our goals.
“My team and I are strongly committed to the home and foster an atmosphere of care and support which enables our residents to live full, interesting and independent lives. We wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for them and their continued support.”
Cartref Annwyl Fan will be joining care homes around the country on the 19th June when they take part in National Care Home Open Day. On this day Cartref will be welcoming visitors and the Mayor to high tea, an event which will encourage members of the local community who haven’t visited before to see the home and spend time with the residents.
Another important day in the home’s diary is Hallmark in Bloom on the 13th July. This event has been held for the last five years and encourages residents in the home to get active and participate in gardening. Each Hallmark home competes against each other and are judged on several categories put together by our gardening charity partners – Thrive. The home, which is designed across one level are confident of another win this year, having won the category of ‘best whole home effort’ last summer. The judges were surprised last year by the home’s ‘beach and caravan’ garden. This was greatly received by the home’s dementia community, helping to evoke happy memories and initiate conversation. This year the home is creating an outdoor game area for residents. There will also be a ’Growers Corner’ which will enable the residents to grow their own fruit and veg.
To RSVP to any of the home’s upcoming events please call Cartref Annwyl Fan on 01269 592447 or email firstname.lastname@example.org