Here at Arcare Helensvale St James, we enjoy using our creativity and skills to create something new and exciting. For Betty, Taimi and many other ladies, getting together for the arts and crafts groups gives them a sense of purpose and belonging.
Let me introduce you to a some of the spectacular ladies we have in our arts and crafts group.
Betty Stephens has been deaf since birth.
Taimi Lehto moved to Australia from Finland and she is always worried about the language barrier and her fear of others not understanding what she is talking about.
Dorothy Harle who is in her 99th year, along with Marion Mason, Doreen Beer and Joyce Robinson.
All these ladies have formed a great friendship during the craft activities with help from lovely volunteers like Michelle.
Betty amazes everyone, none of these residents can do sign language but this does not stop anyone from having a great time.
She sits next to Taimi, whose English is very limited but surprisingly, Betty and Taimi are able to work through the craft activities happily by helping each other. Betty can read lips very well and this has helped both residents to form a unique friendship. Now you see them in the hallway waving to each other, smiling and even stopping to say hello and have a chat.
Building new friendships always makes them happy and helps them to feel included. As Doreen said, “I love doing crafts, but the best part of this group is meeting new friends”.
The decorations were displayed around the residence and it looked amazing! Each of the ladies decorated one for their own room first and then they decorated more for the other residents’ doors including one for my office door. Such a lovely surprise it was for everyone!