Craigielea, People, Pledges, Music, Wishes and Life Stories

Type: Pledge

Jenni Mack, from Craigielea Care Home, writes about Tommy's visit this week and Craigielea's creative approach to person-centred care

Dementia Carer Voices was proud to be invited to visit Craigielea Care Home and spend the day with staff this week.

Here is the story of the day and the wonderful work of Craigielea:


Tuesday 6th February was like any other day at Craigielea Care Home.

Busy yet peaceful, full of laughter, love and care.

A special visitor to the home brought many staff to tears today with the beautiful tale of a woman who’s story is being told all over the country by her brave and wonderful son, Tommy Whitelaw.

The theme throughout was kindness, overcoming isolation and loneliness, remembering the reasons we began caring in the first place, showing love when its needed most and remembering the person on the inside no matter what the medical diagnosis.

Carers, nurses, domestics, kitchen staff, maintenance and management were all touched by Tommy’s story and the Craigielea Pledge Tree has been well and truly grown.

Pledges of “taking more time” “making more smiles” and “being there for relatives” were made amongst others and staff all left with renewed pride in their work and empowerment to do the best they can do for others going forward.

The pledge tree is a wonderful addition to other initiatives we are working on here in Craigielea, Such a “”. Craigielea was the first care homes in the UK to work with Playlist for Life and the “Harry and Margaret” video (this link will take you away from our website) which has been seen by thousands showing the power of music in dementia was created here with our staff and families. Today, some years later Playlist for Life is still a massive part of Craigielea’s structure. We believe in the power of music to connect through the barriers dementia creates and we have seen some beautiful moments through our work with them.

Another initiative is Storriicare (this link will take you away from our website). Storiicare is a social media style way of recording many aspects of care. Craigielea use this programme to record, share and celebrate the activities and social aspects of our residents lives sharing that easily, and quickly in the most person centred way via a virtual network created through email addresses. Because of this our residents families and friends can see all the fun and laughter that goes on in Craigielea through photos, videos and detailed notes about each resident’s day. Much like a diary.

Jenni (activities) also blogs for Storiicare on occasion here (this link will take you away from our website).

One of our OWN initiatives is the Craigielea “Wish Tree”. This allows us to give truly person centred experiences for our residents based on “what matters to them”

A trip to a football stadium, a drive to the coast for a fish supper, going to a musical, ballet, concert or music gig, visiting a place from their past, spending time being pampered, visiting friends or family, we have even taken a couple on holiday to Blackpool. Local press have written about our wish tree on more than one occassion and our residents LOVE seeing themselves in the paper (this link will take you away from our website).

Here at Craigielea we are consistently striving to be the best at what we do. With big plans for 2018 being our best year yet we want to thank Tommy for coming in and reminding us why we do what we do. Making sure that everything we do has our residents and their loved ones at the heart of it.