Residents from a Dorset dementia care home went down on the farm for a day of hands-on fun and animal magic.
The party from Colten Care’s Fernhill home in Longham near Bournemouth enjoyed their minibus trip to nearby High Mead Farm so much they plan to return for more visits.
High Mead is a four-acre community therapy farm offering a supported work environment for people who live with mental health issues, physical disabilities, addiction or dementia.
Its staff and volunteers provide day services and a range of therapeutic activities including arts, crafts and the opportunity to work with animals, soil and nature. The farm also sells its own seasonal vegetables, honey and eggs.
Four Fernhill residents – Joan Vohra, Gwen Jellis, Elizabeth Wilson and Patrick Ryan – went on the visit accompanied by Companionship Team members Ann Marie Knight and Miezy Reynolds.
They cuddled rabbits, held a tortoise, saw Shetland ponies, fed goats and pigs with apples, enjoyed a cream tea and picnic and took part in a pottery class.
Ann Marie said: “We had a lot of fun in the pottery session making objects with the clay. The staff and volunteers were so kind and helpful.
“Some of our residents have farming experience and so a trip such as this is an ideal chance to rekindle memories.
“Others simply enjoy the gift of animal companionship, especially if they had pets when they were younger.
“It was a real delight to see the smiles on the faces of the residents as they were introduced to the animals and took part in the other activities. We look forward to visiting again soon.”