Losing a resident is always hard, and when they do pass on we feel passionate about ensuring their belongings are treated with the utmost respect until they can be collected by the residents loved ones.
In usual circumstances this would mean residents loved ones were able to enter the home and pack up their loved ones belongings independently, bringing in whichever form of collection they deemed the most appropriate.
Across the last year in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic visiting restrictions have meant the way this process works has changed, and staff have been required to pack up residents belongings themselves so they can be collected from the entrance.
Our new home manager at Laurel Lodge, Emily Carasquillo, came up with the idea in her Norwich-based home after having to hand over a residents belongings to their loved ones in plastic bags. Emily immediately sprung into action and contacted our Managing Director Tom Lyons, and proposed a unique idea.
Emily told us a little bit about the spark of genius which came to her when packing up the belongings of one of our residents who was a former World War Two veteran.
"It broke my heart to hand a veteran's belongings back to their loved ones in plastic bags.
"I wanted to make sure we were showing how much our residents mean to us even after they've passed, and I think it is extremely important".
After hearing her concerns Managing Director Tom Lyons and head of Marketing Sam Bailey began working on designs for potential bags or boxes which could fit the purpose and be personalised for the homes. Working alongside Emily the design has been finalised and we are looking forward to seeing these in all of our homes in the near future.
At Black Swan Care Group we are always looking for feedback from our residents, their loved ones and our staff team as this is what allows us to continually improve our services. From Emily's initial idea the campaign is being rolled out to all of our twenty residential facilities throughout the East of England to ensure privacy, and dignity for our residents and their loved ones when they collect.
Emily told us what it meant to her to have her idea supported across the group:
"It is a great feeling; it may be a small thing to some but I’m sure it will mean a lot to the residents loved ones".
Each bag features the Black Swan logo and a message which we think sums up perfectly how we feel about each and every one of our residents - 'Always a part of the Black Swan family...'