There was not a dry eye in the packed Dementia Care Theatre at the recent Dementia and Care Expo, as our MD Jo Bonser delivered her seminar ‘Served with a smile, made with love: Why mealtimes are so much more than a plate full of food’ with VIP guests including Big Ian Donaghy, Jonathan Cunningham, Aileen Beatty, Dementia Lead at Akari Care and John Walton, Managing Director at Woodleigh Care.
Jo shared her very personal and moving story, described by one delegate as ‘inspiring’ of how she helped transform her Mum’s eating when the care professionals told her that her Mum, who was living with vascular dementia, was close to death, as she had given up on eating and drinking.
Jo took responsibility for her Mum’s mealtimes, did her research, observed her behaviour, made tweaks and interventions to her dining experience, and within weeks, her Mum was back to eating independently and went on to enjoy another 4 Christmas dinners before finally passing on Mother’s Day 2020.
As part of her presentation, Jo shared our new beautiful and powerful short film ‘Made with Love’ to highlight the importance of social engagement and inclusivity at mealtimes for everyone, including people living with dementia.
It has been described as ‘AWESOME, BRILLIANT, SUPERB, MOVING, AMAZING, BEAUTIFUL, POWERFUL and a ‘quality 9 minutes’, and has already gone global, including being shared in Australia and America!
We’ll be releasing this video very soon, so watch this space! But be warned, have your tissues at the ready!
We also had a very busy exhibition stand with over 100 visitors, as we invited delegates to take part in our Dementia Mealtime Challenge competition, with the opportunity to win £500 worth of bespoke dining equipment for their care establishment, as well as learn new strategies to help support people living with dementia at mealtimes.
Our MD Jo Bonser, came up with the concept for this competition as she wanted to challenge peoples’ knowledge of mealtime place settings for people living with dementia, as this is just one of many areas, where if we get it right, we can help to minimise eating difficulties for them, helping to increase nutritional intake and overall health and wellbeing.
Jo incorporates this exercise in her new interactive training workshop, ‘The Dementia Mealtime Challenge’ as well as addressing many complex interactions with the mealtime environment, plus other eating difficulties, which prevent nutritional intake for people living with dementia.
Jo delivers her workshop (which includes showcasing our film, Made with Love) to care teams, who are serious about improving their mealtime experience.
Following a request from an Outstanding care provider, Jo has also developed additional services to support care homes improve their dining experience including:
- Mealtime audits
- Dementia enabling environmental audits
- Bespoke mealtime project work
- Public speaking, to spread the message at a higher level.
You can also download a digital copy of our Dignified Dining Solutions Guide, which Jo wrote, whilst helping to support her Mum for over 6 years as she wanted to share what she had learned from personal experience with others to help people with dementia to eat better.
It is packed full of best practice advice and our top tips to overcome challenges that we understand you face around nutrition and hydration with people living with dementia, plus recommended product solutions, to overcome these challenges.
Many people have asked me, ‘how much does it cost?’
It’s a FREE resource, and we call it our little gift to the universe.
As we’re sure you’ll appreciate, this has required significant investment of both time and money and so we would be really grateful, if any of these products are appropriate for you, that you talk to us, or purchase them through our website, www.hcsuk.co.uk. This way you can help us back by supporting a small business.
If you are interested in learning more about any of our services or book a workshop, please contact us here.
Download your own copy of our Dignified Dining Solution Guide below or visit our website at www.hcsuk.co.uk.