Building Empathy For Ageing:
The Activity Cupboard and the Empathy Suit

Alive, in partnership with the Bristol Dementia Wellbeing Service Care Home Liaison Team, is running free skill-building workshops for activity providers and caregivers in the Bristol area, mainly those employed in local care homes. 

These workshops, known as The Activity Cupboard, give opportunities for face-to-face learning, building on CPD, idea sharing and peer support. 

At the November Activity Cupboard, we had an enlightening and powerful workshop which introduced the Empathy Suit – a suit made up of 11 components which work to inhibit mobility, motor skills, vision and hearing – giving the wearer a unique sense of how it may feel to be an older person living with dementia – literally “putting them in the shoes,” of the people they support. 

Attendees took turns to try on the suit and were set simple tasks such as moving objects on a table and walking from a to b. The impact was phenomenal. “Wearing the Empathy Suit made me feel disorientated, heavy, tired and confused – even my voice sounded different. It has shown me how to change my approach – give our residents more time, and understand how fearful they must feel.”

Others described the workshop as “very powerful. All staff working in care homes need to try this to understand how old age can feel.” 

We can bring empathy to you and your whole staff group– if you are interested in the training, give us a call in the office and we can book you in. If you would like to find out more about our training, please contact us at 0117 377 34756, email or check out this page on our website.

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