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Residents at RMBI Care Co. Home Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court enjoying the new Stisted Safari.

Residents at RMBI Care Co. Home Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court in Stisted, Essex, have been having a wild time this week, enjoying a safari in the Home’s grounds. 

Prior to the current pandemic, residents at the Home are taken on lots of fun, sociable and stimulating excursions, with some residents even trying activities from ice-skating to horse-riding. But since lockdown, for their own safety, residents haven’t been able to go on any trips outside of the Home. 

Staff were determined to find a way to provide their residents with some outdoor fun and stimulation, so they came up with the idea of creating a safari ride in the grounds, complete with a safari truck and wild animals to spot amongst the trees. 

Home Manager Aggie McDonald explained: “We thought hard about what we could do to offer some safe outdoor fun and adventure for our residents. Our grounds are huge, so one of our staff had the idea of creating a safari!” 

The Association of Friends of Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court helped to make the idea a reality by donating a golf cart, which was redecorated as The Stisted Safari Shuttle. 

Some of the wild animal banners, hung between the trees on the Stisted Safari.

As well as being a lot of fun, the safari provides residents with a multi-sensory experience, which supports their health and wellbeing. Carers at the Home drive the truck around the grounds, through beautiful woodland, and along the River Blackwater, stopping along the way to point out wildflowers and signs of the changing seasons.   

One resident, Eileen Sims, said: “It’s been a lot of fun going out in the safari truck to get some fresh air.” 

Aggie McDonald said: “Our residents absolutely love going out in our new safari truck, so much so that we are introducing it into our weekly routine. As well as ensuring they get out in the fresh air, it has proved to be a powerful sensory experience, triggering happy memories and prompting lots of lively conversation.”  

RMBI Home Prince Edward Duke of Kent Court is run by RMBI Care Co., part of the Masonic Charitable Foundation. The Home is currently able to safely welcome new residents.

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