The delicious aroma of home-baked goodies from a portable oven is flooding the corridors of an aged care facility in one of Queensland’s remote tropical areas as staff focused on lifting the spirits of those seniors in isolation due to the virus crisis.
Staff at Ozcare Port Douglas in Far North Queensland have baked scones and cheese and herb biscuits for residents in the corridors of the facility as a way of bringing the smell of “home baked goodness” to them while they are unable to gather with more than five residents at a time.
“We have a little oven I take around the wings so we have been cooking scones and other home bakes just to make the environment feel homely,” Ozcare Port Douglas Diversional Therapist Linda Wright said.
"They are loving the smell of it cooking and they certainly like eating them as well.”
Facility Manager Daniel Robinson said the not-for-profit aged care provider aimed to keep life as normal as possible for residents, while current restrictions allow gatherings of only five and one and a half metres apart.
As part of the approach to keeping residents engaged, Mr Robinson said staff are also delivered Easter eggs and hot cross buns to each resident in their room on Easter Sunday.
On April 25, a special Anzac Day Service is also being planned, with one resident, a navy retiree, preparing to read an excerpt from In Flanders Fields. The service is to be broadcast via the internal intercom throughout the facility.
“It is important to try to keep things as normal as possible so we have focussed on lots of activities like getting outside and going for walks in the garden, playing Scrabble and watching movies,” Mr Robinson said.
“The residents have been doing Easter crafts and we have decorated the facility with their work. It is about staying positive and finding joy in the simple things because we know there are many seniors in the community who are feeling lonely and isolated at this time.”