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Now in its second year, The Cosyfeet OT Award has been awarded to Anastasia Barnes, a senior Occupational Therapist at the Emerald Centre in Colchester. The £1000 award will help fund the creation of a sensory garden where dementia clients and their families can spend time gardening and relaxing together. The winning application was chosen by Cosyfeet who were looking for a worthy project that would assist an occupational therapist or occupational therapy student to develop their professional knowledge and skills while benefitting others.
The garden will provide a space where individuals with dementia can interact with the environment, utilise their skills and knowledge, regain self-esteem and be physically and mentally active. In this way sleep, appetite, fitness and mood can be improved for a better quality of life. It will also provide a place where positive memories can be created for the families of dementia sufferers, and where community groups can gain a better understanding of dementia while assisting with garden development projects.
“The therapeutic benefits of horticulture and art are well documented,” says Anastasia. “Our garden will incorporate plants to stimulate the senses and sculptures made by patients from everyday objects.”
“We’re delighted to assist Anastasia in the creation of the sensory garden,” says Cosyfeet Managing Director, Andrew Peirce. “Dementia is such a huge issue for us in the UK at the present time. This inspired initiative will create a therapeutic space in which patients and their families can be purposefully engaged and enjoy quality time.”
We will receive a full report on the project from Anastasia later in the year.