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Exercise can help in battle against dementia

A leading researcher has highlighted the importance of exercise in reducing the chances of developing dementia, urging people to put down their crossword puzzles and get out for a jog instead.

The news comes after Prof Clive Ballard, Professor of Age Related Disease at King’s College London, suggested that the best methods of fending off the condition are to head out for a jog or brisk walk, going against the common theory that stimulating the brain with complicated puzzles is more effective.

Until recently the Director of Research for the Alzheimer’s Society, Ballard is currently pioneering an investigation into the long-term effects of brain training in older people. In the study, over 11,000 people used commercial brain training games over a period of six weeks. The findings showed that on a range of tests, volunteers showed no benefits compared to a group which had spent the same amount of time surfing the internet. With this in mind, Ballard has stated that Britons will be better off integrating regular exercise into their lives as a defence against dementia.

Backed up by series of studies

There is a growing body of evidence which suggests that cardio-vascular exercise can reduce the risk of dementia, showing the importance of keeping as active as possible during later years. These studies are imperative in helping people gain a better understanding of the condition, as the results could also be used to enhance the quality of specialist nursing care in facilities all over the UK.

Another of these studies was carried out just one month ago by the University of Pittsburgh, which found that men and women who took a brisk 40-minute walk three times a week showed an increase in the size of the brain compared to those who didn’t. While the brain usually shrinks by 1 per cent every year, those who exercised in the study showed an expansion of up to 2 per cent – knocking almost two years off their biological age as a result.

Image Credit: ernomijland (Flickr.com)

Water Mill House

Room

Carebase Life Picture gallery of memorable moments

Carebase Life Video gallery

Our residential care homes are filled with plenty of laughter and lots of fun. Part of this is down to our teams making the most of every occasion.

Letters of Thanks

We love to hear from family members and friends about their experiences of life at one of our homes. How they feel about our home, the care we provide and the team that make that possible.

Knowing the ways in which we have made a difference and touched the lives of those in our care – and their loved ones – is what keeps us focused on delivering the highest standard of care at all times.

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in our Customer Feedback Survey

As part of our commitment to providing people with the best possible information and resources, we would like to ask you to take part in a short online survey for us.

The survey should only take a couple of minutes to complete and consists of 12 short questions.

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Results for care homes in or near

Moving home

Once you’ve chosen the right care home, then comes the preparation to move your loved one out of their home and into the new one.

  • Find out from the care home what belongings can be accommodated and make preparations to organise this.
  • Work closely with the home to help your loved one settle into their new surroundings.
  • Make sure personal mementoes and prized possessions are integrated into the new environment.

The right home

Now is the time to take your loved one and family to the shortlisted homes, before making a decision on the best one.

  • Narrow down the homes to the one or two you are really happy with.
  • Go with your gut instinct – you will know when the home is the right one.
  • Once you’ve decided on the one, visit them again and at different times of the day.
  • Sample the menu.

Family life

Family time should be part and parcel of any care home. Considering you will be spending a great deal of time there, you need to ensure there are provisions made to do so.

  • Check there aren’t specific visiting times.
  • Check how families are integrated into the home.
  • Make sure there are designated spaces, so if and when you want to spend some private time with your loved one, you can do so.

Life at the care home

Resident and relative walking

The role of a care home should not just be to provide great care. It should be about creating new memories, having lots of fun and making friends for life.

  • Find out whether the home has a varied activities programme
  • Check how the care home settles new residents in and helps them to get to know fellow residents
  • Make sure the home has access with the outside world, like regular outings or links with the local community.

The personal care plan

Every good care home should produce a comprehensive individual care plan detailing everything about the resident, from care to dietary needs.

  • Check the care home will produce a personal care plan and ensure you are involved in the compilation of this.
  • Give the care home as much information as possible, as this is incredibly valuable to ensure care is tailored to your loved one’s needs.

Making the numbers work

Paying for the care of your loved one is a big commitment and will require sound financial planning. Keep on top of this from the start to ensure care fees are within your budget and there are no surprises later.

  • Check the literature you receive includes fees. If they are not clear, then clarify this at the initial meeting.
  • Confirm whether the care fees listed are the total amount, whether they increase on a year-by-year basis, and if so, by how much.
  • Check whether your loved one is entitled to state benefits or funding to support paying for the care.
  • Explore whether the home has care fee payment options, and if so, which one works for you.

Viewing homes firsthand

Once you’ve sifted through the literature, you will start to get an idea of which care homes you may like to visit. Don’t discard homes purely on the material itself. The only way to get a real feel of a care home is by paying a visit.

  • Shortlist the best homes and make appointments to see the managers.
  • Do your homework – take a list of questions you want answered to the visit. It will ensure specific areas get addressed.
  • Take in everything – the décor, level of staff, quality of food, facilities, activities to occupy residents and how families integrate into the home.
  • Go to the ‘show round’ without your loved one initially to ensure your first impressions our good before they visit.

The groundwork

When you decide a residential care home might be the best solution to meet the needs of your loved one, this will be the first of many tough decisions. This is the time for research, the more thorough you are, the better.

  • Search the internet to find care homes in your area. The local paper is a good place to start, as many homes advertise.
  • Ask your local GP for recommendations, as well as friends and family. Word of mouth is powerful - a great care home will have a good reputation.
  • Call each home and visit their website to gather information, plus order a brochure.
  • Broach the subject about finding a care home with your loved one. Keep them involved in the decision-making process.

Familiar objects

We strategically place familiar objects around the home. Scarves and hats are hung up in the corridors and rooms feature drawers filled with paraphernalia and rummage boxes.

These prompt discussion, calm those that are feeling anxious and help us pinpoint the things that interest individuals. A resident might put on a hat because he fancies a stroll or another might put on an outfit that triggers a wonderful memory.

Safe and secure

We adopt solutions to help your loved one maintain an important level of independence.

But at the same time you can have the peace of mind that we have many safety features, such as pressure pads by beds and sophisticated Nurse Call systems, letting us know if a resident has got out of bed and may need assistance. Our highly trained nurses are available 24 hours a day.

Design features

Many of our features are simple but can have a huge impact on everyday life for those with dementia.

Shorter, wider corridors with plain carpet and pictorial signs on doors to indicate room functions help to reduce confusion. Brighter lighting gives higher visibility and helps to prevent falls. While, smaller living groups works better for our dementia residents.

The future of Carebase homes

Hemel Hempstead, CGI

As our business continues to grow from strength to strength, we are happy to announce 2014 will see a new residential development open in Hemel Hempstead. Plans for other future developments will be added to this site soon. 

We have set ourselves a personal challenge to make each care home better than the last. This is no easy feat when our new homes already house some fantastic features, like spas, private dining rooms, libraries, cinemas, allotments and putting greens. And of course, all the practical necessities like en-suite wet rooms, nurse call systems and personal care plans. But we are constantly evolving and learning from our experiences.

Press Releases

To hear the latest news about Carebase as a business and what is happening across its 12 homes, take a look at the press releases below.
 

Land Acquisitions

As our business grows from strength to strength, we always keep a keen eye out for suitable land to build our care homes. If you have a site in mind, please do get in touch.

What we look for


The types of sites we are particularly interested in are those where there could be an opportunity to get planning permission for a care home accommodating approximately 50 to 60 beds. The gross building area should be between 2,500 to 3,000 square metres, on sites from 0.75 to 1 acre. We are happy to consider sites that house existing buildings but not those that are listed. This is due to the fact we would want to demolish in order to build purpose-built facilities.

The right location

We seek sites in good locations around London and within the Home Counties. We give great consideration to sites in:

  • Built-up residential areas
  • Rural locations which have close proximity to main residential areas
  • Main road frontage sites on approaches into built-up areas or within city centres.

What we offer

Our reputation and track record speaks for itself. As a care home group that operates its own homes, we understand the marketplace better than most developers. You would have the peace of mind that we make sound decisions. And thanks to our flat board structure, we have the luxury of making these decisions very quickly.

If you are not on a retainer, then we pay generous introductory fees on completion of the transaction. You would have direct access to Property Director Mike Hirsch, who is directly responsible for land acquisitions and you would not have to liaise through any other parties.

Our homes provide employment for more than 50 people in the local area. Our sites are quiet and are not likely to disturb or interfere with surrounding neighbours. Our residential designs are not controversial and any traffic generation will be on a very low scale.

For further information, please contact Mike Hirsch on 07860 274 706 or at mike.hirsch@carebase.org.uk

Sitemap

Accessibility

Carebase has re-designed its website to ensure that it is accessible to everyone. We have a deep understanding of how different people access the internet and have developed a website that is clear, concise and simple to use.

Layout

The layout of the website has been created to make the website as accessible as possible for users with special requirements or impairments. The colours used on the website, in both the foreground and background, have been carefully selected to ensure the contrast does not affect ease of reading. Most of the images used on the website include descriptive captions. Images that have no captions have been used purely for decorative purposes.

Navigation

At the top of each page, you will find the website’s primary navigation buttons. The secondary navigation elements can be found in a bar under the main sections. To be directed to the homepage, simply click on the Carebase logo.

Text resizing

The website should automatically adapt to your browser settings. Alternatively, the text on the website can be resized to suit your needs. Please click on the ‘text size’ option on the above right of the site and select the suitable option.

Contact us

We are committed to continuously developing the website’s editorial guidelines to ensure we always produce accessible content. If you have any questions or suggestions regarding the accessibility of this website, please contact us.

Cookie & Privacy Policy

Why do we have a privacy policy?

We want you to feel comfortable both using our site and with the privacy of your personal and confidential information.

What is covered?

The Carebase privacy policy covers the collection and use of personal information that Carebase collects when you are on the Carebase site, and when you use Carebase' services. This policy also covers Carebase' use of any personal information that Carebase' business partners share with Carebase or that Carebase may collect on a partner's site.

What is not covered?

Our policy policy does not apply to the practices of companies that Carebase does not own or control, or to people that Carebase does not employ or manage.

What information is collected?

Carebase collects personal information when you use certain Carebase products or services, when you visit Carebase pages, when you use forms on the site, and when you enter promotions. Carebase may also receive personal information from our business partners.

Carebase also automatically receives and records information on our server logs from your browser including your IP address, Carebase cookie information and the page you requested.

How is the information used?

Carebase uses information for the following purposes: to improve the Carebase site for mutual benefit, to fulfill your requests for products and services, and to contact you about new products and services.

How is the collected information shared or disclosed?

Carebase will not sell or rent your personal information to anyone. However Carebase may send your personal information to other companies or people when we have your consent to share the information or we need to share your information to provide the product or service you have requested.

How do we use cookies?

Carebase may set and access Carebase cookies on your computer. A 'cookie' is a small text file which browsers store on your computer or device to aid your browsing experience. Our 'cookie' stores some basic information that for example helps us to identify if you have visited the site before. However, as it is based on your computer/device, we will not find the 'cookie' if you visit our site from a different computer/device. No information which can be used to identify you personally or your computer/device is stored in the cookie or can be accessed using it. Please see below for a list of the cookies Carebase use along with their purpose.

Session Cookies:

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A uniquely generated ID that corresponds to the session_id in the site admin database. Used when cookie and session are set as the session type. Used only for logged in members.

exp_last_activity
Every time the page is reloaded, the last activity is set to the current datetime. Used to determine expiry. This is essential for logged in users, but not for guests - it is set for both.

exp_tracker
Tracks the last 5 pages viewed by the user, and is used primarily for redirection after logging in etc. Affects guests and logged in users.

exp_last_visit
Sets the datetime that the user last visited the site, and is set for both guests and logged in users. If not set, is automatically set to 10 years ago. Affects guests and logged in users.

Google Analytics Cookies:

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This cookie is typically written to the browser upon the first visit to your site from that web browser. If the cookie has been deleted by the browser operator, and the browser subsequently visits your site, a new __utma cookie is written with a different unique ID. This cookie is used to determine unique visitors to your site and it is updated with each page view. Additionally, this cookie is provided with a unique ID that Google Analytics uses to ensure both the validity and accessibility of the cookie as an extra security measure.

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This cookie is used to establish and continue a user session with your site. When a user views a page on your site, the Google Analytics code attempts to update this cookie. If it does not find the cookie, a new one is written and a new session is established. Each time a user visits a different page on your site, this cookie is updated to expire in 30 minutes, thus continuing a single session for as long as user activity continues within 30-minute intervals. This cookie expires when a user pauses on a page on your site for longer than 30 minutes.

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This cookie is no longer used by the ga.js tracking code to determine session status. Historically, this cookie operated in conjunction with the __utmb cookie to determine whether or not to establish a new session for the user. For backwards compatibility purposes with sites still using the urchin.js tracking code, this cookie will continue to be written and will expire when the user exits the browser. However, if you are debugging your site tracking and you use the ga.js tracking code, you should not interpret the existence of this cookie in relation to a new or expired session.

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This cookie stores the type of referral used by the visitor to reach your site, whether via a direct method, a referring link, a website search, or a campaign such as an ad or an email link. It is used to calculate search engine traffic, ad campaigns and page navigation within your own site. The cookie is updated with each page view to your site.

Can I turn cookies off?

If you do not want any cookies to be stored on your PC, web browsers such as Google Chrome and Internet Explorer provide the option to disable them. Please bear in mind that some websites you visit in future including the Carebase site may not function correctly if you choose to disable cookies.

What if we amend our policy?

Carebase may amend this privacy policy from time to time. If we make any substantial changes in the way we use your personal information we will notify you by posting a prominent announcement on our pages.

Questions or suggestions?

If you have questions or suggestions we would like to hear from you.

And finally...

By using our website, you consent to the collection and use of information by Carebase as specified above. We hope you enjoy it.

Archive

Snapshots Picture gallery of memorable moments

Our residential care homes are filled with plenty of laughter and lots of fun. Part of this is down to our teams making the most of every occasion.

Contact Us

Do you require further information?

A member of our team would be happy to answer any question you may have or send out additional material. Please enter the nature of your enquiry below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Award-winning employer thanks to our rewarding people programme

Award being accepted, Great British Care Awards

Winning the Care Employer of the Year Award 2010 gives us great recognition of our commitment to invest in our staff.

The accolade, part of the Great British Care Awards, celebrates an employer’s commitment to care and recognition of delivering a quality service. Nominated twice in a row and up for the award again in 2011, this accolade is largely down to our employee training and development investment – empowering our people to deliver high quality care through training, support and guidance.

On winning the award in 2010, HR manager Phillipa Morley said: “We are touched that our staff have been nominating us and are very proud to win the award. It’s heart-warming to know that people want to work for us. It demonstrates that we must be doing things right and that it is viable to run a successful business based on care and compassion to all. Really this award is for all our employees, as they are what makes us unique.”

Managing Director Nicola Coveney added: "We are absolutely delighted to win the award. Carebase is constantly striving to improve the service it provides and is willing to invest heavily to achieve this goal. The award is dedicated to our people that work tirelessly, passionately and with extraordinary commitment each and every day.”

Carebase was awarded Care Employer of the Year 2011 at the regional Great London Care Awards, and will go through as finalists at the 2012 national awards.

Day school engages employees

Carebase Day School logo

Employees get a real insight into the specialist person-centred ethos we instil in our residential care homes, thanks to the Carebase Day School.

Running four times a year, the school provides employees with an interactive day designed to demonstrate why we do things the way we do. Featuring plenty of gift giving and break-out sessions, everyone comes together from cleaners to managers to carers and this is where they gain an understanding of the Carebase approach. We demonstrate how residents are at the heart of our work and that it is okay for a carer to sit and hold a resident’s hand, for example, if they’re feeling upset or anxious rather than ensuring all the set daily tasks are completed.

Inspiring our people

Our training engages people's hearts and minds – it empowers those on the front line to make a difference.

Our retention rates have improved since the day school opened, (out of the 250 people who attended, only 0.7 per cent of people have left, compared to a previous rate of 5 per cent). Our employees are feeling more inspired, and there is a greater appreciation of each other’s role and working towards the same goal.

Ashbrook Court

Ashbrook Court

Queen Elizabeth Park

Exterior at night, QEP, Guildford

Alderwood

Resources & Links

Carer walking with resident

The following list of resources and links are a great place to find additional information and support on topics related to elderly care, from family support and finance to understanding dementia. 

Choosing a Care Home guide provides useful tips

Alderwood Care Home, Colchester

The following guide to Choosing a Care Home lists our specific stages from a to z - covering everything from researching the best local care homes, sorting the finances to settling into a new home life.

Meaningful activity to keep life interesting and fun

Resident and therapist using Snoezlen sensory room

The Carebase approach to activity for those with memory loss is different. This may well be because of the effort me make to really understand our residents and how their memory loss is affecting their days. We know that dementia affects people in different ways and at different paces of progression. Every resident with memory loss will be in a unique situation so this calls for a truly individualised approach.

Though there is no found ‘cure’ for the causes of such dementias as Alzheimer’s, current medical evidence shows that purposeful occupation is therapeutic in as much as it both makes for more pleasant days and most importantly can also stave off the effects of the progression of the condition.

So we can see the idea of activity really goes to the heart of the best care for the person with dementia. And so it goes to the heart of our care.

We work with each resident, and work hard to develop a programme of activity which will help them find purpose in life to the fullest of their ability. For those for whom dementia is at later stages we accompany them and gently prompt memories and engage them in the gentler aspects of the ‘here and now’. Those for whom the symptoms are less pronounced we provide and encourage participation in a full range of activities, hobbies and entertainment.

We believe it is something that every resident deserves… and that we are uniquely placed to deliver.

 Some of our group activities include:

    • Gardening
    • Indoor flower craft
    • Visits from local entertainers, fitness instructors, dancers and musicians
    • Trips to museums or shows
    • Baking classes
    • Poetry sessions and discussion groups
    • Quiz nights
    • Tea dances
    • Themed events, lunches and dinners

 

Dining and menu that promotes wellbeing and contentment

Resident and carer in dining room

Nutrition and hydration are of key importance to residents with memory loss. Our approach to care embraces this, encouraging each resident to maintain a healthy nutritional intake. Eating can also, for some, be a challenge so we are mindful with this and understand how to assist this. For all residents, making available a balanced and delicious menu is a great start point. This is driven by our passion to serve an excellent variety of foods which are familiar, visibly appealing and freshly prepared by our chefs.

Our menus constantly change, particularly over the seasons, and always feature fruit and vegetables when they are at their freshest. Of course, we still feature firm favourites that our residents know and love. Our food is of restaurant quality, which also includes traditional and popular best of British dishes.

We provide three meals a day, as well as morning coffee and biscuits, afternoon tea with homemade cakes and a hot bedtime drink with an optional light snack. There are also plenty of nutritious snacks, like teacakes, malt loaf, sandwiches and fruit, available

Thoughtful about food 

To stay healthy, a good diet and physical activity is important – to all of us. The efficiency of a body can decrease the older we get. The ability to digest and process food slows down, as does the metabolic rate. Our residents are encouraged to eat foods that are rich in starch and fibre, high in iron, vitamin C and D, Folic Acid, potassium and calcium. Our homes also actively employ a low salt approach in their cooking.

We ensure menus offer carbohydrates, which is a good source of energy and provides most of our fibre. Oats and pulses are particularly good at reducing the amount of cholesterol in our blood. While wholegrain bread or brown rice help keep bowels healthy. We offer many calcium filled foods, good for strengthening the bones and helping to prevent Osteoporosis. Cheese and biscuits are offered as a dessert option for example, while Horlicks, Ovaltine and drinking chocolate are a great way of supplementing the diet of a resident who doesn’t have a big appetite.

Private suites and a home that support our expert care

Interior bedroom, Alderwood

Our homes feature bespoke areas for those with dementia. These are uncompromisingly designed to feel as homely and comfortable as our residential care setting. There are large en-suite bedrooms that are well appointed, feel spacious and large enough to feel comfortable to enjoy quieter and private moments.

We also build in design features that specifically address those with memory loss, creating the right environment to enhance everyday life for those living with dementia. Each of our residential homes have a wealth of features that are designed to maximise independence, as well as create a safe, stimulating and restful haven.

Our approach to dementia care defined

Resident and carer make a cup of tea

Our wealth of expert knowledge means the care we provide for residents with memory loss is second to none. Our care homes offer specific features that maximise independence and promote a safe, stimulating and restful environment.

At Carebase we embrace this to the full and help residents to combat the earlier stages of dementia. We work with each resident to keep the mind active, with activity being a key part of care. The wealth of published medical information about dementia is that (dependent on which type it is) one can stave off the decline in memory loss by keeping the mind active through purposeful activity. At Carebase we embrace this to the full and help those ‘earlier stage’ residents to combat the effects of dementia as much as it is appropriate to do so.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to dementia care, since people’s needs and abilities can change across time, so care for older people with dementia has to be very closely tailored to the individual person’s needs and subject to regular review with other family members and healthcare professionals.

For those whose condition is progressing, we provide an environment that supports therapeutic care, encourages gentle activity and accompany residents as they reminisce about past times and, most importantly provide care that maintains their dignity and self respect.

A powerful therapeutic approach to care

We employ various therapeutic techniques to promote interaction and a sense of wellbeing. We engage the senses through a variety of group and one-to-one activities, which focus on likes and dislikes and triggering memories.

Each home offers a variety of different techniques, like music therapy. A beautiful piece of music can strike a chord in a resident’s emotions or a familiar tune can tap into their memories. Pet therapy - where we bring animals like dogs into the home and encourage residents to pet or stroke them - can help reduce agitation, encourage physical activity, prompt interaction and provide the simple pleasure of companionship.

Investing in staff with a passion for caring

Carer and residents

We believe a happy workforce leads to a happy environment in our residential care homes and we are committed to investing in our staff.

We start off by recruiting the right people from the start and go to great lengths in finding likeminded people who are genuinely passionate about caring for others. Of course we are looking for highly experienced individuals, but also adopt a ‘hire for attitude, train for skills’ approach. That means if we find an exceptional candidate, we will provide the necessary skills training.

We spent more than £350,000 on training in 2010. This investment spans a broad range of areas, including ensuring our homes have access to fantastic training, like specific NVQ, dementia and HR programmes.

We ensure that all our people are equipped with the right tools to do their jobs well and receive training specific to their role. For example, our dementia care nurses are fully trained in approaches endorsed by the Alzheimer’s Society and industry leader Dementia Care Matters. This includes life story work and managing unusual behaviours.

In addition each of our employees spends an intensive day at the Carebase Day School. This is where they find out how the residents are at the very heart of everything we do and learn about the Carebase way of caring for them.

Testament to the success of our people programme is being awarded the Care Employer 2010 accolade, and shortlisted as a finalist again this year. We believe this demonstrates that our approach is the right one.

Dining and menu to keep everyone happy and healthy

A carer serves two residents lunch

We are passionate about serving varied and delicious cuisine for our residents, freshly prepared on site. Our chefs carefully create menus that are familiar, visibly appealing and nutritious.

Our menus constantly change, particularly over the seasons, and always feature fruit and vegetables when they are at their freshest. Of course, we still feature firm favourites that our residents know and love. Our food is of restaurant quality, which also includes traditional and popular best of British dishes.

We provide three meals a day, as well as morning coffee and biscuits, afternoon tea with homemade cakes and a hot bedtime drink with an optional light snack. There are also plenty of nutritious snacks, like teacakes, malt loaf, sandwiches and fruit, available on request day or night. Residents are offered a glass of sherry, wine or beer with lunch or dinner.

We often have traditional afternoon teas — a great opportunity for residents to come together and enjoy a spread of delicious sandwiches and homemade cakes.

Health benefits

To stay healthy, a good diet and physical activity is important – to all of us. The efficiency of a body can decrease the older we get. The ability to digest and process food slows down, as does the metabolic rate. Our residents are encouraged to eat foods that are rich in starch and fibre, high in iron, vitamin C and D, Folic Acid, potassium and calcium. Our homes also actively employ a low salt approach in their cooking.

We ensure menus offer carbohydrates, which is a good source of energy and provides most of our fibre. Oats and pulses are particularly good at reducing the amount of cholesterol in our blood. While wholegrain bread or brown rice help keep bowels healthy. We offer many calcium filled foods, good for strengthening the bones and helping to prevent Osteoporosis. Cheese and biscuits are offered as a dessert option for example, while Horlicks, Ovaltine and drinking chocolate are a great way of supplementing the diet of a resident who doesn’t have a big appetite.

Our people go that extra mile

Carebase employee receives award

Our people come from all walks of life but they have one thing in common – they are genuinely passionate about caring for our residents.

Employees recruited in our residential care homes are people-orientated and possess the attributes we believe to be key: being caring, loving, giving, patient, open and honest.

From ex-bankers to ex-fireman, our people come from all over the world and many different backgrounds. We actively seek out people that can bring interesting life experience.

Recruiting the right people from the start

‘Can you dance, sing and are you happy to share your life story?’ is the essence of our recruitment campaign designed to attract the right people.

Even when a candidate has the right skills, we also make sure they embrace the values we are looking for. Our approach is ‘hire for attitude, train for skills’. If the right attitude is there, we are happy to provide any additional training. As well as possessing the relevant experience, we look for people who can make a real difference to our team. This is not a task orientated job – our people walk into work not knowing what their day will bring. Employing people with the mindset “if I can help in some way, I will” means we can be cohesive in the way we work.

Since winning Care Employer of the Year 2010 we have found that more and more people are approaching us for employment.

As well as traditional advertising, our staff recommend people they know to us and sometimes we meet candidates when there are no vacancies to fill. If we find someone who is right for us, we keep them on file for future roles, and have even been known to create jobs for those who have something fantastic to offer.

Employee development

We spent £350,000 on training in 2010 alone – one example of our commitment to developing employees.

Our homes have access to a full range of NVQ, dementia and HR training. We aim to equip our teams across the business with the best possible training. Our pledge to development doesn’t stop at nursing and care staff. Maintenance workers receive manual and fire drill training. Those in administration and marketing are encouraged to attend industry-standard courses. Accountants train with the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. We’ve even sent people to Harvard to develop their skills! Not only is the training beneficial to the individual, we know that this valuable knowledge can then be passed on to help develop other colleagues.

Rewarding employees

We like to reward employees that go that extra mile and our Heart of Gold Awards does just this.

The annual ceremony sees winners acknowledged at each of our homes who have repeatedly made a difference to the lives of our residents. Gaynor Brown, a domestic worker at the Spinney, in Chingford, London, was awarded for going beyond the expected with our residents. She decorates her cleaning trolley, makes a point of remembering birthdays and sits with residents for a chat after her shifts. On Mother’s Day she brought in flowers for every lady in the home.

Maintenance Worker Tony Becker, from Ashbrook Court, in Sewardstone, London, won an award for being a star during the Football World Cup. Knowing one of the residents loved football, he customised his Zimmer frame with flags. He is also always more than happy to involve residents in his daily work.

We also recognise great work at the Carebase Day School and some homes run ‘Employee of the Month’ events. A little goes a long way and our managers make sure they constantly thank staff and offer praise when appropriate. We know sometimes it is the simple things that can make our employees feel valued.

Supporting our people

Our teams know each other well. We’re open, friendly and we recruit similarly minded people who don’t stand on ceremony. We are there for each other in more than just a work capacity. If a member of staff is going through a difficult time in their personal life we offer support to the best of our ability wherever it’s needed. We want our people to feel appreciated, happy and engaged.

Activities to keep life interesting and fun

Residents gardening, Alderwood Care Home

We want our residents to enjoy every moment with us, whether this is indulging in their passions, going along on the many trips we organise or having fun at one of the many events we host.

We promote an active lifestyle and it has a proven positive effect on our residents. If you walk into any of our residential care homes you will find plenty of fun and lots of laughter. There is never a dull moment – we don’t believe in simply passing time.

Each home has dedicated activities co-ordinators tasked with organising weekly planned schedule of entertainments and activities. We keep keeping them engaging, fresh and interesting.

Encouraging hobbies and interests

We are always keen to help our residents to continue the hobbies or interests they have always been passionate about. We leave gardening tools by the door, for those that fancy a spot of gardening, or provide an easel and paints for our artists.

Some of our group activities include:
    • Gardening
    • Indoor flower craft
    • Visits from local entertainers, fitness instructors, dancers and musicians
    • Trips to museums or shows
    • Baking classes
    • Poetry sessions and discussion groups
    • Quiz nights
    • Tea dances
    • Themed events, lunches and dinners

Many of our residents take pleasure from doing everyday tasks they are familiar with and we assist and welcome participation wherever it will be helpful to the resident. Such activities might even involve the ritual of light housework, folding clothes or simply making a cup of tea. We have found from experience that some of our residents can find real comfort and enjoyment from these simple household tasks.

Our values designed to make a difference

Resident talking happily

Our mission: “To improve and make a difference to the lives we touch through the delivery of high quality care and a deep sense of compassion.”

Our values:

  • Care and compassion
  • Respect and appreciation
  • Teamwork and enjoyment
  • Focus and best practice
  • Honesty and integrity
  • Recognition and reward
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Development and investment

Living the values

‘Care and compassion’ are values we bring to life not just for individuals in our care, but also through the way we look after our teams and recruit employees. We make sure everyone across the business knows what this means. This could simply be asking ourselves “are we approaching this situation with care and compassion?” whether we are in the boardroom or looking after a resident.

Our policy is simple – we do what we say we will. This applies to everyone in the business – from senior management through to the frontline. We respect and appreciate our teams - they are the vital link between the business and our residents. We recognise the important work they do for us and make every effort to reward our employees whenever they do an exceptional job. We believe a happy workforce leads to a happy environment in our care homes.

We do not make compromises when it comes to the quality of our homes or the care of our residents. We continuously develop and invest in our residential care homes to ensure they reach the highest possible standards. This includes our commitment to invest in our people.

About us Our history, our people, our future

First created in 1990, Carebase has rapidly grown as a business, now running a number of elderly care homes across South East England and East Anglia. Our recipe to success is down to three vital ingredients: creating the right environment, providing exceptional care and recruiting a fantastic team of people. Carebase continues its efforts on becoming a leading provider of nursing, residential and dementia care.

The Spinney

The Spinney exterior at night

Claremont Court Specialist Dementia Care Home

Claremont Court exterior

Acorn Court

Acorn Court exterior

Honey Lane Specialist Dementia Care Home

Exterior at night, Honey Lane Care Home

Private suites and a home anyone would be happy to live in

Lounge interior, Acacia Lodge, Henley

No matter how beautiful a care home seems on the face of it, it is the care that truly defines its value. We never forget that what people are looking for first is the firm knowledge that their loved-one is being care for expertly but also with patience, compassion and empathy… day in, day out.

Our care homes feature large en-suite bedrooms that are well appointed, feel spacious and large enough to feel comfortable to enjoy quieter and private moments. But there is more than this.
Communal areas and lounges feel ‘just right’. The quality feel of our décor and furnishings is in itself uplifting as well as being relaxing and homely enough to make anyone happy to linger, socialise or settle to read a book or paper.

Residents want and deserve choices. So they can wake up in the morning, have breakfast and a chat with friends, wander down to the activities room or hair salon, go to the cinema room to catch a movie or perhaps go outdoors to do some gardening.

Gardens, cinemas, libraries, hair salons and more 

Our care homes include a range of areas under one roof – creating spaces our residents can enjoy. There are private dining rooms for families to enjoy a Sunday roast with their loved one. There are hair salons, and beauty spas in our newer homes. As well as bars and cinemas, we have libraries that are well stocked, including audio books for those that struggle with reading. Kitchenettes are incorporated into our dining areas where residents can make a cup of tea, bake a cake or even wash dishes if they’d like to.

We believe outdoor space is just as important and our homes proudly present some magnificent gardens. We are including more allotments in our homes where possible and flower beds are raised so residents with a passion for gardening can do so at a comfortable height.

Supporting families through a difficult time

Home Manager, resident & relative discuss a care plan

We are here to provide you with as much support as you need to help you decide on the best care home for your loved one.

The managers at each of our residential care homes are on hand to guide families through every stage of the process, from start to finish. They operate an open door policy. You can drop in at the home or phone the manager at any time. No appointment is necessary. We want to make finding a care home for your loved one as painless as possible.

Our managers and care teams have a wealth of experience in supporting families through difficult times. We understand the mixed emotions that you might be experiencing. Our home managers are here to provide advise, take away the pressure and ease the strain you and your family might be under.

We suggest you visit the prospective home as much as possible before coming to a decision. We also actively encourage you visit other care homes as making comparisons can be useful.  For some useful tips and guidance on what to look for, click on our guide to Choosing a Care Home.

Many of our care homes run informal monthly family support coffee mornings. Talking to people who have been through similiar experiences can provide a welcome source of support and assurance. To hear firsthand what the families of our residents have to say, take a look at our video.

Financial Support

If you’re looking for financial help in paying for residential care, you’ll know that this area can be a mine field.

We have teamed up with Care Aware Advocacy, an independent non–profit advisory service that advices on issues relating to elderly care. We have done our research and have found that Care Aware provides sound comprehensive help and information in funding long-term care.

Care Aware offers guidance on the following:

  • Sourcing appropriate care services
  • Establishing state benefit entitlement, including attendance allowance, pension credit, continuing care benefit and registered nursing care contribution
  • Paying care fees, funding top-up payments, securing inheritance tax planning and protecting assets
  • Ensuring wishes are respected and using power of attorney (or equivalent) to protect independence and integrity.

We often run drop-in days with Care Aware representatives on hand to meet with families and residents. This gives them the opportunity to discuss any concerns and difficulties they may be experiencing in paying for their care.

You can get in touch with Care Aware at www.careaware.co.uk or by calling the free helpline on 08705 134 925.

Care and nursing that will exceed your expectations

Carer and resident, Alderwood Care Home

No matter how beautiful a care home seems on the face of it, it is the care that truly defines its value. We never forget that what people are looking for first is the firm knowledge that their loved-one is being care for expertly but also with patience, compassion and empathy… day in, day out.

We pride ourselves on providing the best possible care in our homes and employ a fantastic team dedicated to ensuring we achieve this round the clock. Our highly-trained team is genuinely passionate about caring for our residents and making a real difference to their wellbeing each and every day. Where skilled nursing is required, we ensure that experienced nursing staff are there to administer nursing care.

Each resident has an individualised plan of care and assistance everything about the level of care each resident requires, their likes and dislikes, their favourite meals and pastimes right the way through to medication required and its frequency.

This is our standard and you can always feel reassured on this point. Perhaps the only way to truly know this for yourself is to talk to a family member of one of our current residents. We encourage you to do this and to ask about this - and to do so with any and every care home that you decide to consider. Just having this reassurance could help you make the right choice for the future. 

Honey Lane Residential Dementia Care Home

Aspen Grange Nursing & Dementia Care Home

Brooklands

News Keep up to date and in touch

Work for Us

We are always on the look out for individuals who have a natural talent in caring for others. Our employees come from all walks of life, and if we find a candidate that embraces our values, we will equip them with all the training they need.

We are a caring employer and are committed to developing, nurturing and rewarding our people. Testament to this is being awarded Care Employer of the Year 2010. If you would like to become a member of the Carebase family, please get in touch. Please emailrecruitment@carebase.org.uk or call us on 0844 332 0599.

Current Vacancies

Terms & Conditions

1. Nature of agreement

Please read these Terms and Conditions carefully before using this web site which you are accessing at the URL www.carebase.org.uk ("the Site"). Use of this Site constitutes acceptance of the Terms of Use below and your agreement to enter into a legally binding agreement ("Agreement") with Carebase ("we"/ "us"). We may modify this Agreement at any time, and such modifications shall be effective immediately upon posting of the modified Terms and Conditions. You agree to review the Terms and Conditions periodically to be aware of such modifications and your continued access or use of the Site shall be deemed to be your conclusive acceptance of the modified Terms and Conditions.

2. Site ownership

The Site is owned and operated by Carebase Limited, a company registered in England and Wales (registered number 01069595) whose registered address is at Sardinia House, Sardinia Street, Lincolns Inn Fields, London WC2A 3LZ.

3. Copyright

All of this Site including but not limited to graphics, logos, icons, text, images and software ("Content") is owned by us or our content providers and is protected by UK and international copyright laws. You may use this Site and the Content for non-commercial use only, and may not use the Site or any part of the Content for redistribution, retransmission, publication of any downloaded material, or otherwise reproducing in any medium or format whatever, without our prior written consent.

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The "Carebase" logo and business name "Carebase" are our trademarks (the "Marks"). You acknowledge our ownership of the Marks and agree not to display or use in any manner the Marks without our prior permission.

You acknowledge and agree that the Site and the Content contains proprietary and confidential information that is protected by applicable intellectual property and other laws. You further acknowledge and agree that the Content is protected by copyright, database rights, trademarks, service marks, patents or other proprietary rights and laws.

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We may provide links to other websites or resources. Because we have no control over such sites and resources, you acknowledge and agree that we are not responsible for the availability of such external sites or resources, and do not endorse and are not responsible or liable for any content, advertising, products, or other materials on or available from such sites or resources.

You further acknowledge and agree that we shall not be responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with use of or reliance on any such content, goods or services that may be available on or through any such site or resource.

6. Disclaimer and liability

This Site is provided on an "as is" basis. We make no representations or warranties of any kind express or implied as to the operation of this site or the information content materials or products included on this site. You agree that your use of this Site is at your sole risk.

To the full extent permissible by applicable law we disclaim all warranties express or implied including but not limited to implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

We do not warrant that this Site its servers or e-mail sent from this site are free from viruses or other harmful components.

We will not be liable for any damages of any kind arising from the use of this Site including but not limited to damages for consequential loss. This exclusion of liability will not apply to any damages arising from death or personal injury caused by our negligence or that of our employees or agents.

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You agree to indemnify us against all loss and damage howsoever caused resulting from any breach of this Agreement by you.

8. Applicable law

This Agreement shall be subject to English law and the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.
If you have any questions regarding this Agreement, please contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you need an answer to a particular question in an instant, the following list of frequently asked questions is a good place to start.

Helping you find the right residential care

If you’re looking for a care home for your loved one, you’re likely to be experiencing many different emotions.

There’s no denying that this will be a difficult decision. We can help with this by providing you with all the relevant information and answering any questions you might have. We can also advise you on what you should be looking for from a care home. We are in a position to do this because we have more than 20 years experience in nursing, residential and dementia care. We are here to assist you every step of the way.

Care designed to meet everyone's needs

The most profound and meaningful care comes from being interested in others. From there everything else flows naturally.

We are all different, whatever our ages. We all have different expectations, likes and dislikes as well as different personal needs with regards personal wellbeing. We are interested in the whole person. That is why we ensure our carers have the expertise to care well whilst genuinely having a heart for it.

So we don’t stop at being interested in what care a resident needs, we really get to know that person and arrange our efforts around those things that will make that person contented with life.

This isn’t just about ‘achieving excellence’, for us it is a calling to do more and be more for our residents - because, in our view, that’s what they deserve.

Alderwood Care Home - Opening Summer 2011

Specialist dementia care that focuses on wellness

The challenges and fears of memory loss in older age are clear for both the older person and also for the family members affected. And there comes a time whereby residential care from a specialist in this area is the best solution.

Carebase has many valuable years of experience looking after people living with dementia. We profoundly understand the journey that the person affected by dementia is on and we are both well equipped and well prepared to care for them in a way that makes the best of every day.

Whatever the stage of dementia, we maintain our interest in residents as people, ensuring their feelings of contentment, comfort, and security are preserved.

Through the years of being close to resident families, we also understand what it is like for you, the person that is charged with the responsibility of making the best decision for your loved one. We recognise the vital importance of choosing the right care home, and more often than not, the absolute urgency of this. We will work with you every step of the way, not only to address your concerns but also to build your trust that we keep our promises to care, every hour of every day.

Bramley Court

At Carebase, we are guestsin the homes of our residents

What makes 'our' care homes different is that we recognise the truth that these are the homes of our residents, first and foremost. This brings a whole new perspective on how to serve and care for those that choose a Carebase home. We are, in effect, the guests.

So although we build and operate exceptional care homes, we do not do this out of a sense of personal pride. It is quite the reverse. It is out of a feeling of deep respect and a desire to create the most comfortable and 'at home' feeling we can for our residents. This is then underpinned by strength of purpose: to care for our residents as they need and as they wish. There is far more to a Carebase care home than this. But this is our starting point, and to us it is the right one. Browse our homes above or use our home finder to discover your closest home.

Your first choice forexceptional nursing, residential and dementia care

Gardening at Alderwood Care Home

With care and nursing homes across South East England and East Anglia, we provide exceptional residential, nursing, respite and dementia care for older people. Our homes combine state-of-the-art facilities, elegant homely décor and, most importantly, a highly-trained team of people dedicated to caring.

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