A specially arranged India Day has spiced up life for residents of a dementia care home in Wellington, Somerset.
Residents of Camelot House and Lodge spent the day immersed in Indian culture, trying out classic costumes and jewellery, having their hands painted with henna tattoos, and sampling Indian music, dance and traditionally prepared food.
Activities co-ordinator, Richard Dempslake, said: “Many of our residents who are living with dementia are well able to imagine that our international theme days are like going on a day’s foreign holiday, and that’s been especially important this year.
“They were thrilled by the pop-up cinema we organised showing Bollywood dancing, and thoroughly enjoyed the playlist of Indian music we put together for them.
“My colleagues and I entertained them by dressing up in colourful Indian costume including saris, churidar, kurtha, dhoti, dupatta which residents recognised from the Bollywood films.
“We also had interactive games such as ‘match the pair’ with images of animals native to India, and sensory treats featuring Indian spices such as coriander and fragrances like jasmine.
“We are lucky in having several staff of Indian descent at Camelot House and Lodge, which means we could provide an authentic international experience with something to appeal to everyone.
“It was lovely to see the way our residents entered into the spirit of the day, and we can’t wait to do it again.”
For many of Camelot House and Lodge’s residents the highlight of the day was a delicious Indian buffet, with dishes rich in subtle Indian flavours and mostly home-made by Ryju Puthenveettil and Anil George who are on Camelot Care’s nursing team.
The flavoursome spread included onion bhaji, samosa, banana chips and jack fruit chips as starters, with south Indian fried rice, chilli chicken and Kerala roasted pork for the main course, and vermicelli milk pudding, gulab jamun and soan papdi as desserts.