As part of our dementia campaign ahead of Dementia Action Week, we find out how baking bread has proved to be one of many wonderful sensory activities for adults with dementia taking place at our care home in Leicester.
Charity Learning for the Fourth Age (L4A) and social business Planet Leicester Bakers have been delivering ‘bread and conversations’ sessions at Asra House Residential Care Home through their community project, Baking a Difference.
Reminiscence activities for people living with dementia
The sessions have proved to be extremely popular with our residents, especially those living with dementia. This is because they are wonderful for the sense of touch, smell and taste, as well as evoking happy memories.
The project uses the process of baking and sharing fresh, handmade bread to encourage residents to share memories and positive feelings associated with bread in their lives.
Home manager Dina Dasani said: “Reminiscence activities like this are ideal, especially for our ladies, who would have made their own chapattis for loved ones at home.
“They recall days gone by when they would sit around the table with their relatives, chatting for hours as they made chapattis. It is like they are doing the same here when they are taking part in these sessions.”
Dina said the sensory benefits for older people living with dementia are really important too.
“It is such a good sensory activity for adults with dementia – kneading the dough is lovely for touch and of course the smell and taste of the bread they make is amazing.”
The Baking a Difference project has received almost £50,000 of National Lottery funding for the delivery of the sessions, with the CEO of National Lottery operator Camelot, Nigel Railton, recently visiting the home to see the project in action.
Melissa March, CEO of L4A, said: ”It is fantastic to see the power that the joy of bread can have in transforming how people think and feel. At L4A, we are delighted to have a range of partnerships that enable us to improve the quality of later life for older people receiving care in Leicestershire."