Our pioneering HenPower Project has taken the top spot to be named the TSB Community Partner in the Pride of the North East Awards.
Andy Armitage, TSB regional branch distribution director, added: "Our Community Partner Award recognises the amazing work our charity partners are doing to help communities in the North East.
"We feel HenPower is a very deserving winner – such a simple, lovely idea, executed brilliantly.
"It genuinely helps bring a little bit of joy back in to the lives of the elderly suffering from loneliness and depression."
Piloted in 2012 the project brings hen-keeping and creative sessions to older people and those living with dementia to tackle loneliness and improve wellbeing.
The commitment of staff, artists and volunteers and the enthusiasm of residents and care staff participating has seen the project grow over the past five years to over 30 care settings across England with pilots underway in the Netherlands and Taiwan.
Douglas Hunter, Equal Arts co-director who devised the project, said: “It’s amazing to have gone from such humble beginnings in one care setting to supporting thousands of older people and communities across England and globally.
“It is fantastic for the project and all those involved. The efforts of staff and artists, buy in from care staff and residents embracing something different is making a positive difference to people’s lives.”
Moving away from traditional reminiscence based activities, HenPower focuses on the Imagination Model. It encourages people to live in the moment, explore their abilities and communicate through creativity.
Lesley Hobbs is manager at Deerhurst Care Home in Bristol. Run by Brunelcare, the setting joined the project earlier this year.
She said: “HenPower has exceeded all expectations and the hens and creative sessions have given so much pleasure and excitement.
“The hens come into the home and you see residents light up. The sense of ownership and daily jobs such as collecting eggs has given purposeful activity and increased teamwork for everyone involved. It is simply a brilliant project.”
Care providers currently part of the HenPower community include Akari Care, Bupa, Orchard Care, Brunelcare, Barchester and Bondcare.
To join the HenPower community or to find out more visit www.equalarts.org.uk/henpower
Winners of the Pride of the North East Awards go forward to be considered in the national Pride of Britain Awards later this year.
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