SOCIAL SUPPORT PROGRAMS
Socialisation for anyone living with dementia
Caladenia has been providing services to people with dementia and their carers for over 30 years. Social Support Groups are run from our Meadowbank House in Mooroolbark which is the only purpose built facility for Dementia Specific Day Care in the Shire of Yarra Ranges.
An enormous amount of planning has gone into designing the buildings and garden, which are functional, safe and secure, as well as being reminiscent of a grand club or house. From the sweeping verandahs we have views of the City of Melbourne and Mt Macedon as well as views of the Dandenong Ranges and surrounds.
Caladenia provides social programs and recreational opportunities 6 days a week.
Our programs are designed to be person centered, and focus on wellness and reablement. The programs are designed to suit the needs and abilities of the individual attending.
People living with early dementia have differing needs and interests to those living with more advanced dementia. Our programs and activities cater to those differing needs on separate days.
At Caladenia we challenge the concept that we provide “dementia specific activities”. We are just providing the opportunity to for people living with dementia to take part in activities, and enabling people to succeed. We do not believe in labels such as "dementia specific tai chi". Is it not just tai chi with an instructor who understands the challenges a person with dementia may face? And dementia specific art, is surely just art. Inclusive art.
Caladenia Dementia Care is inclusive and values and embraces difference by seeking to ensure that its services are relevant, accessible and timely for all. We are committed to the principles of social justice and non-discrimination and recognise that people with different backgrounds, cultures, religion, ethnicity, gender, race, national origin, disability, sexual orientation and age bring fresh ideas and perceptions that benefit the organisation and all of its stakeholders. Valuing diversity, Caladenia works to embrace difference and engage with the changing needs of its participants, carers, volunteers, employees, board members and stakeholders.
Caladenia welcomes enquiries from the LGBTI+ community.
Monday, Wednesday and Thursday
- Groups for people with early dementia and people with younger onset dementia.
Tuesday and Friday
- Groups and activities for people living with more advanced dementia
Wednesday Valley Outing Program
- Caters to people living with dementia in Yarra Glen, Healesville, Wandin, Seville, Woori Yallock and surrounds.
Friday Men's Group ("Friday Fellas") and Tuesday Men's Group ("Tuesday Travellers")
- A community based interest based group for men with early to moderate dementia.
Monday and Thursday Community Based Outings
- suitable for anyone with dementia and good mobility. Venues range from Morning Melodies to the Daffodil Farm, from Pub Lunches to Museums and Exhibitions.
Saturday "Drop In Day"
- Once a month - come any time between 10 and 4. Families and Friends welcome.
- Social programs twice a month for people living with dementia.
Our philosophy is based on a simple concept - the right of every individual to respect as a valued member of society. To this end, the Day Centre is simply called "The Club". We have no clients, patients or participants, we have "Club Members". No distinction is made between staff, volunteers and Club Members We participate together, eat together as a group and encourage Club Members to initiate activities such as scoring games, clearing tables and other small jobs around the Club. Nowhere is "out-of-bounds" and no-one is prevented from doing certain activities or jobs unless it is unsafe.
Staff and volunteers encourage our members to tell their story. The Members' stories and views are encouraged, and the individual interests of our Members are built into the program for full involvement. Extensive social backgrounds are gathered from Members and their families, so that each person's tastes, likes and dislikes can be catered for. Careful program planning and implementation ensure that individual needs are catered for, within the wider group programming.
Caladenia's programs and services take into account people at all stages of dementia. Different groups on different days ensure that Members are able to socialise with other like minded people. Some Members of our group for those with early dementia are still driving and coping well at home. These people enjoy being with others who are experiencing similar circumstances. All activities are geared to the abilities of the group and emphasis is laid on improving self-esteem and encouraging people to achieve.
Safety and Security
Caladenia's premises were specially designed for people with dementia. The verandahs and garden are secure, and provide no exit from the facility. The only entry/exit from the building is provided by a key coded door system, which can only be operated by staff. Where Members feel a need to "walk", they are encouraged to move about the building and gardens in complete security. The inside of the building has been designed with walking and exploring in mind; there are no "dead ends" to frustrate a person, and the circular path through the building ends up back in the main activity area.
Laughter - the best medicine
Laughter is a huge part of the program, and no topic is taboo. Discussing fashions has taught the staff much about underwear for women 60 years ago, what were "easy-feels"??!! Discussing medals and awards one morning, someone enlightened me as to the "real" meaning of a "DSO"!! During our sing-a-long sessions, we encourage those "other" versions of well-known songs. This promotes remembrance, reminiscing and a good laugh!