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Customer Story – Preston

Friendship formed with a shared
love of the outdoors

For Preston Crothers, a lifetime of gardening has been a ticket to connection and friendship on his dementia journey.

Preston, is a regular visitor to Mary Chester House, Alzheimer’s WA’s respite home in Shenton Park. Preston visits weekly for over night stays as a means to connect with others, socialise and enjoy outings and activities in a specialised dementia friendly environment. Staying overnight also gives his wife a break from duties as a full-time carer.

Among the array of activities at Mary Chester House, Preston finds particular joy in tending to the gardens. It’s here, amidst the greenery and with a hose in hand, that he has struck up a special bond with Care Coordinator Brooke Bonnell. Their interactions are marked by playful banter and genuine camaraderie, all while nurturing the thriving plants.

“Preston is so fun to have around. He loves to joke, but it’s always well natured. We have a great time gardening and I love hearing about his life,” said Brooke. “The garden has never been greener!’

At the heart of Alzheimer’s WA’s respite services lies the Enabling Household™️ model – an approach designed to empower individuals living with dementia. Within the welcoming environment of the purpose-built home, Preston discovers a sanctuary where his identity is cherished, his abilities nurtured, and his spirit reignited. Guided by a team of dedicated professionals, he partakes in a variety of engaging activities, outings and social interactions, forging connections with clients and staff alike.

Whether baking cakes, playing games, or assisting with household chores, Preston’s days at Mary Chester House are filled with laughter and friendship, thanks in no small part to his friendship with Brooke.

“She’s not just my carer, she’s my friend,” said Preston, “She get’s my quirky sense of humour.”

Brooke has watched Preston thrive in the Mary Chester House environment.

“I think coming here and having a fun couple of days laughing with the staff and other clients is really making a difference,” according to Brooke.

Alzheimer’s WA has developed its short stay respite service based on research evidence, aiming to optimize the abilities of individuals with dementia and promote their overall sense of wellbeing.

These households function akin to typical homes, providing freshly cooked meals, a wide array of activities, and opportunities for leisure outings. The private bedrooms are customizable, allowing guests to personalize their space and cultivate a sense of familiarity, thereby maximizing comfort during their stay.

To book your day or overnight respite stay at one of AWA’s homes, contact us here or phone 1300 66 77 88.

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