The efforts put in by catering staff at a care home for veterans in High Wycombe are being highlighted ahead of Nutrition & Hydration Week which runs from Monday 13th to Sunday 19th March 2023.
Enjoying nutritious meals and socialising at mealtimes is an essential part of the outstanding person-centred care delivered by the charity, which has Homes in Solihull, Surbiton and in Hughenden Road, High Wycombe.
Talented teams of chefs and caterers from Signature Dining work with care staff to understand the needs of each individual, to create appealing meals which meet residents complex care and nutritional needs.
In the High Wycombe Home, Chef Manager Marcin Kosinski said he and his team make residents birthdays that little bit more special. ‘We always cook the meal of their choice.
Even if it’s something we don’t have in the kitchen, we’re happy to go to the shops and buy the ingredients. The residents also tell us what cakes they like, and we’ll make them their own birthday cake.
It’s all about making their special day a bit more special. It means a lot to them, and it means a lot to me and my team that we can do this for the residents and make them happy.‘
In addition, Marcin also offers tours of the kitchen to residents, so they can see how their food is prepared and the effort and love that goes into producing every meal.
Some Royal Star & Garter residents specific care needs mean they require texture-modified food and the care homes kitchens have a wide selection of pureed food for them to choose from.
Residents could be on a pureed diet for a number of reasons. They could have a risk of choking and aspiration or problems with swallowing, which is sometimes brought on by dementia or dental issues. Nearly every meal served in the Homes can be pureed, including nearly all meats, so residents on texture modified diets are often eating exactly the same food as the non-pureed meals.
Pauline Shaw, Director of Care at Royal Star & Garter, said: ‘Mealtimes are an important part of everyone’s daily routine, and they can be even more important in care home settings. A good dining experience can help with social interaction, and the consumption of healthy, appetising foods can make a big positive impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and happiness.
The emphasis at Royal Star & Garter is always about providing the very best care. That extends to the food we serve in the Homes. We know that food can be linked to memory, social occasions and emotions, and that it can bring enjoyment, socialisation and dignity. That’s why we do everything we can to meet the needs of individuals in the dining room, and make mealtimes an enjoyable, positive experience.‘
Paul Robottom, Founder and Owner Director of Signature Dining, said: ‘Everything that we do centres around the happiness and dignity of the residents. We are privileged to work in residents’ own homes, and design our menus to meet the nutrition and hydration needs of all residents whilst being adaptable to meet their preferences and special requests.‘
The food served at Royal Star & Garter has been praised by residents and relatives. Derek’s dad Bob served in the Army’s Catering Corps, and recently became a resident. Derek said: ‘Coming to Royal Star & Garter was like coming home for Dad. He had a freshly cooked hot meal, one that had been cooked especially for him. That means so much to Dad, and as a struggling relative, that brought a smile to my face. I was relieved he was home. Not just in a care home, but home. That meant the world to me.‘
And retired GP Annet spoke of the impact food at Royal Star & Garter had on her mother Felicia, whose husband served in the RAF. She said: ‘Mum had a six-week stay in another care home, and I could see she was losing weight and not happy. But moving to Royal Star & Garter was like a breath of fresh air. I can see how well cared for she is. She’s eating well, she’s put on weight, and she’s happy.‘
Royal Star & Garter provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia. Royal Star & Garter in High Wycombe Home is welcoming new residents. Further information on this or about working at the Home can be found on the Royal Star & Garter website at www.starandgarter.org.
*Source of information : Press release from Royal Star & Garter.