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A care home’s pyjama dementia initiative has gone viral after a Facebook post was shared to around 13 million people in just seven days.

A care home’s pyjama dementia initiative has gone viral after a Facebook post was shared to around 13 million people in just seven days.

As part of a campaign during Dementia Action Week, The Old Vicarage care home in Allithwate posted photos of its night staff carrying out their care duties wearing pyjamas and dressing gowns. The night-time attire is used as an aid to remind residents with dementia who wake up during the night that it’s bedtime and so help them to get back to sleep.

The Facebook post of care assistants Janet Cartwright and Brenda Kerr soon went viral, receiving over 400,000 likes and 50,000 comments, being shared almost 240,000 times, and reaching a total of 13 million people.

Charlotte Gregson, Home Manager at The Old Vicarage, who is responsible for the bedtime initiative, said: “None of our care staff, including myself, wear uniforms. We feel that uniforms separate us- they are a symbol of power and control, and represent ‘doing a job’, whereas we want our residents to feel special, loved, and at home.

“Many of our residents are living with dementia and, when they wake during the night, it can be confusing to see lots of activity. By going about their work in pyjamas and dressing gowns, our night staff are helping to remind residents that it’s time for bed.

“It’s an idea that seems to have captured everyone’s hearts. We’ve had thousands of comments and messages from people who think it’s an amazing idea and praising us for our person-centred care.”

The care home encouraged people to share the post to help fund a dementia-embracing community orchestra, a new project soon to be set up by Dignity in Dementia.

Kamal Siddiqi, Owner of The Old Vicarage, offered to donate 50p to the project for every post share, and agreed a limit of £200 with Dignity in Dementia, a social enterprise that runs a range of dementia-embracing community groups locally and offers free dementia training and other services to families.

Since the care home encouraged its followers to donate to help fund the community orchestra, the organisation has received almost £1,500 in donations.

Lesley Gill, Director of Dignity in Dementia, added: “We’ve been taken aback by people’s generosity, with donations ranging from 50p to £200. We can’t thank Kamal and The Old Vicarage enough for helping us turn our idea into a reality.

“It will include a mixture of people, with and without dementia, all who have enjoyed playing instruments previously and want to make music with others again. It will provide an opportunity for them to come together in a safe environment with little pressure, to enjoy playing together and forging new friendships.”

The Old Vicarage is in the village of Allithwaite, just over a mile from Grange-over-Sands in Cumbria. The care home provides nursing, residential, dementia and respite care for 19 residents.

Dignity in Dementia need £3,000 to fund the orchestra for a full year. Donations can be made by visiting,


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