Lambwood Heights end months of separation as resident and daughter are reunited in bespoke Summerhouse
It was an emotional affair when Lambwood Heights resident Winnie Mulgrew and her daughter Margaret Godfrey were finally brought face-to-face after months of separation, thanks to our new Summerhouse.
Since March, Lambwood Heights have remained closed from all visits from family and friends in order to ensure the care and welfare of residents and staff.
Being conscious of the impact that no face-to-face visits were having on residents and their loved ones, Lambwood Heights installed a Summerhouse in the garden so that residents and their relatives could meet safely during the coronavirus lockdown.
Bringing Families Together
Resident Winnie was reunited with daughter Margaret as they both performed the ‘opening ceremony’ to applause from staff, cutting a ribbon on their respective sides of the Summerhouse.
Being able to see Winnie after many months Margaret said, “It was the most joyful experience! I’d missed Mum so much. All the phone calls and video calls are great, but it’s just not the same as being able to see her.
“It helped having the staff there clapping and making it into a ceremony. It helped me keep it together but I did have to wipe my eyes a little bit!”
We captured the beautiful moment between Winnie and Margaret in the video below.
Families and loved ones have their temperatures taken before entering the Summerhouse. There is a clear screen fitted between residents and their loved one with an intercom that allows them to hear each other clearly.
Residents enter from one side while up to two family members from the same household are shown into the other side via the garden. Families book half hour appointments and the Summerhouse is thoroughly cleaned and disinfected between each visit.
Home Manager Sonia Kasese said, “Bringing families together is benefitting everybody. It’s been amazing for our residents’ wellbeing, and for their families’ too. We have kept them in touch via Skype calls and FaceTime, but as Margaret says, it’s not the same as seeing your loved one in front of you. It is wonderful to be able to bring them together safely.
“We have been, and currently are, COVID-free, and because we want to maintain that status, we won’t be opening the doors of the home any time soon. But anyone who is thinking of moving in can be reassured that they will be able to have contact with their family.”
Margaret and Winnie, a former dancer and Windmill Girl at the London theatre of the same name in the mid-1940s, are planning to meet again very soon. Margaret continued, “I’ve already booked my appointment and my sister’s coming from Hertfordshire to see Mum with her daughter. All I’m waiting for now is when we can have a hug!”
Find out more about Lambwood Heights Care Home.