Ice cream, afternoon tea and car trips on the menu as Balhousie Care residents enjoy the outdoors

Residents of Balhousie Care Group are making the most of the easing of lockdown restrictions to take trips with loved ones and have family get-togethers.

With recent change of rules around travel and socialising, the award-winning care home group trialled out-of-home visits between residents and their relatives.

One of the first to enjoy the easing of restrictions was Jeannette Henderson, a resident at Balhousie Brookfield care home in Carnoustie, Angus which ran the pilot scheme. Jeannette travelled by car to her daughter Sara’s home, also in Carnoustie, where she enjoyed an afternoon in Sara’s garden with her family (pictured below).

Sara said: “The visit went really well. I think we were all a bit apprehensive because it’s been more than a year since my mum has had a trip like that. But she said she felt very comfortable coming out with us and it was a great mood enhancer for her. I can see how it will help other residents too and look forward to it being a regular thing.”

Another Brookfield resident who saw her family was Muriel, who was treated to afternoon tea in hear daughter Avril’s garden (pictured).

Following the trial at Brookfield, Balhousie Care Group extended out-of-home visiting to each of its 26 homes from Monday, in time for Scotland’s next stage in its roadmap out of lockdown – the re-opening of hospitality and retail. Service users at Balhousie’s specialist care facility, ASC, in Balbeggie enjoyed a trip to Carnoustie beach (pictured below).

Sheilah Harvey, Head of Operations at Balhousie Care Group, said: “The easing of travel and socialising restrictions last weekend meant the time was right to trial out-of-home visits between residents and their relatives and friends. We’re grateful to our relatives for working with us to ensure safe and happy outings. We really hope our local communities will continue to follow Government guidelines so that all of our care home residents can confidently and safely enjoy time again outside of the homes.”