Milton Keynes care home gives helping hand to children's football team
A care home has brought smiles to members of a children's football team by sponsoring their kit.
As Covid measures meant Kents Hill Care Home couldn’t invite the community in, the staff team decided to reach out in other ways.
The Tunbridge Grove home got behind behind Aspley Guise Football Club Under 8s team, sponsoring their kits and supporting them during games.
In keeping with the footballing theme, they also started a campaign to collect old football kit for the charity KitAid, which distributes donations to underprivileged children and adults in some of the poorest countries around the world.
Care home manager Anu Godagama said: “Supporting the Under 8s team has been a fantastic focus and helped us to feel part of our community. We love watching the team’s progress, even cheering them along from the sidelines when we can!
“It also feels great to be able to do something for so many other teams and players across the world. We have been absolutely delighted with the response to our appeal for old kit, collecting huge amount of kit donations since summer 2020 – including donations from Aspley Guise Football Club. We’ve decided to keep this campaign going for the long term now.”
But the home’s community spirit doesn’t end there. As well as reaching out to help some of the youngest in the local community, they have also done something lovely for some of its oldest members, by creating almost 100 hampers for charity Age UK.
Paula Ayers, development manager for Age UK Milton Keynes said: “The team at Kents Hill put together the most thoughtfully-selected and beautifully-presented hampers over the Christmas period – and have kept going since then.
“They have now donated almost 100 gift baskets full of treats which have been sent out to older and more vulnerable people in our community, boosting spirits during a tough and isolating time. These gifts show them they are being thought of and cared for. We are so grateful to Kents Hill Care Home for their ongoing support.”
Kents Hill has also been supporting a local counselling service for families with loved ones in care homes in Milton Keynes. The service, run by Willen Hospice and funded by Milton Keynes Council, offers support to help them cope with feelings of separation, isolation, or loss during the pandemic. Kents Hill has been sharing details of the service, established six months into the pandemic, across social media and through leaflets and postcards.
Anu said: "Being outward-looking and connected has always been important – but it has felt more important than ever this past year. It has been such a tough time for everyone, but we were determined that, even as we were coping with the pandemic ourselves, we would continue to think of others and build connections with this community we’re so proud to be a part of.
“The success, positivity, and gratitude generated have made us all hungry to do even more!”
Kents Hill Care Home, run by Maria Mallaband Care Group, offers residential, nursing, and dementia care.