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Swimming for all the family

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Classes to match your goals

Making a small wish a reality


Something great happened at one of our leisure centres recently and we really want to share it with you.  Avante Care & Support, a registered charity who deliver specialist residential dementia and nursing services, recently made one of their residents small wish a reality.

Pilgrims View care home in Snodland, recently took resident Yvonne swimming after learning she was a keen swimmer. One afternoon Yvonne spoke to Vicky O’Neil, Activities Coordinator about her love for swimming and from that moment on Vicky, with the help from other carers, were determined to give Yvonne the opportunity to go swimming again.

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Vicky said, ‘I talked through plans with Yvonne to make sure she was happy and willing to go, which she was! The next stage was to purchase a swimming costume, but as we all know swim wear come in all shapes and sizes and it is very much personal choice when choosing a garment like this. It was paramount Yvonne was involved and was able to choose swim wear she was happy with.

Avante works with a company called Oomph who help support their activities and provide day trips out for residents including shopping trips. It just so happened there was a shopping trip booked so staff went shopping with Yvonne to choose her swimwear. The following week Vicky and another carer set off for Larkfield Leisure Centre’.

Yvonne said she felt a little nervous but more excited to be going swimming. Vicky says, ‘We supported Yvonne into the pool and we waded in up to our waists, that’s when my heart melted and I was overwhelmed with emotion as Yvonne pushed herself out into the water and began to swim. She looked so happy, relaxed and comfortable. It was an amazing afternoon and one that Yvonne was very keen to repeat. On the way home Yvonne suggested other residents that might be keen to join her next time’.

We have now decided on bi-monthly swimming trips and have encouraged relatives to bring swim wear to the home for their loved ones and family members so we can hopefully extend the swimming trips out to more residents’.

We look forward to welcoming Yvonne and other residents to our centres in the future.