Beechwood care home provides support and nursing care for physically disabled adults with complex needs. Set in the village of Edgerton, near Huddersfield the centre offers a home for around 20 residents.
The care home is continually looking for new ways to enhance the life experience of residents, and as part of their latest project, wanted to create a room where service users can access technology to create new experiences and explore the world around them. The new space was to be called the Life Skills Room.
The development of the Room was possible thanks to a grant from the Cummins Foundation and Audiovisual integrator Pure AV was approached to work with Cummins and Beechwood on the design and installation of the room.
A 55” Clevertouch Plus screen on height adjustable floor stand provides the main interactive surface within the room. The option to be able to choose between pen and finger to control the screen was also an important feature. The Clevertouch screen can be used independently or connected up to a wall mounted 65” Philips display installed at one end of the room.
The large wall mounted screen provides an area for residents to watch television, view movies, access the internet or play computer games. Source selection and control of the room is managed via a Crestron control system with a simple user interface installed onto iPads. Wall speakers flood the room with sound helping to immerse residents into their chosen activity.
A set of virtual reality headsets is in place to enable service users to explore environments that would not usually be accessible to them and can be adapted for use by staff to provide educational experiences to support the learning of new skills.
One of the most critical aspects of the design is the integration of a fully controllable, dynamic LED lighting system. The addition of the lighting brings the environment to life and introduces an additional level of sensory experience to the room, responding automatically to the video content or music being played.
The Life Skills room is available for use by local schools, community disability groups and volunteers and offers many benefits to a wide range of people and disabilities.
“The adaptable nature of the lighting and the interactive technology available makes the room particularly beneficial to those with neurological injuries, communication problems, and limited mobility. It enables schools in the area, especially schools which are already in our community partnership programme to get an insight into what can be achieved to help disabled people through technology”. - Gemma Mc Corkindale, Volunteer co-ordinator
The Beechwood residents have been making full use of the new facilities and the positive impact on daily routine at the care home is already clear to see.
“The Life Skills room is amazing. I watch the service users faces, and I see the joy it brings. Each day, I find something new with the technology in the room, which inspires me to explore new ways to bring outside experiences into the lives of our service users." - Gemma Mc Corkindale, Volunteer co-ordinator