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The Fremantle Trust marked Care Home Open Day (Friday 16th June) with a series of events across the region.

The national awareness day emphasises the importance of connecting care homes with their local communities to develop lasting relationships.

Chesham Leys nursing home was inspired by the theme of ‘friendship’ and linked this with the fact that The Fremantle Trust is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Their project involved writing to 25 care homes in 25 counties across the UK, inviting people to become ‘Friends of Chesham Leys’. The initiative has encouraged residents to write to others and reignite the ‘lost art’ of hand-written letters, which are increasingly replaced by less personal digital communication.

Friends and family of residents at the nursing home were invited to join together for a celebratory afternoon tea on Friday as part of the project, where they read through letters and replies and talked about the importance of communities coming together.

The Trust’s Aylesbury-based Lewin House nursing home also marked Care Home Open Day by holding a sports day in conjunction with Belgrave Lodge learning disability service. Members of local charity Men in Sheds, which supports older men to socialise through woodwork and other activities, also came down to join everyone for afternoon tea.

In Wing members of the local community were invited to a summer picnic, hosted by the team from Carey Lodge care home, while Fremantle Court care home in Stoke Mandeville hosted a cake baking competition to mark the occasion.

Commenting on the events, Jo Head, regional director of older people’s services at The Fremantle Trust, said:

“Care Home Open Day is a national initiative which gives us a great opportunity to bring people together and recognise the importance of community spirit. By building strong neighbourhood connections we are able to develop lasting relationships which ensure our care homes are at the heart of the communities they serve.”