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Relaunch of our Droimnín home

An article taken from the Laois Nationalist about the recent relaunch in June of our Droimnín nursing home with the local community 

The extraordinary kindness of the Stradbally community will never be forgotten at Droimnín Nursing Home, which has just been relaunched following a complete refurbishment.

During the darkest days of the Covid pandemic, it was the incredible support of local people that helped staff and residents to keep going, lifting their spirits at a time when they needed it most.

As they look forward to a brighter future, the Droimnín team gave heartfelt thanks to the community on Saturday 21 May, when the nursing home was officially relaunched by Timothy Murphy Chairman and CEO of Brookhaven Healthcare at a joyful gathering of staff, residents, families, friends and supporters.

Reflecting the spirit and purpose of the occasion, Group Clinical Director Eveline Sheeran said: “When staff and residents were at an all-time low, the level of support from the Stradbally community was absolutely phenomenal. The community really rallied around and there were times when staff were in tears over the kindness they were shown. We wanted to give thanks and acknowledge that extraordinary support, which will never be forgotten.”

It was a wonderful afternoon at Droimnín, with a rich range of entertainment that included a garden party and barbecue, music by Abbeyfolk, an art exhibition by residents and a delightful Irish dancing display by students from St Colman’s NS.

Events were chiefly organised by Activities Coordinator Róisín Fleming and Healthcare Assistant Sandra Knowles, who are both passionately committed to their roles and worked tirelessly to plan the special occasion.

Among the highlights of the residents’ art exhibition was beautiful work by Joe Dooley, who has lived at the nursing home for the past five years with his mother Johanna. The mother and son have rooms side by side at Droimnín, reflecting their close and mutually supportive relationship in what has become their family home.

Droimnín has 51 residents at present but has capacity for 101 and is actively welcoming new residents now that the refurbishment is complete. All resident rooms, showers and bathrooms as well as all communal areas have been completely redecorated in a fresh contemporary style, giving a warm and inviting air throughout the home.

Home is where the heart is and it is this sense of home that the management team and staff strive to create for residents, with the support of families and friends. The aim is to provide care that is always respectful and appropriate to individual residents’ needs, helping them to live as independently as possible while still ensuring a safe and secure environment.

Residents have a major input into the extensive activities programme at Droimnín, suggesting and selecting social outings, entertainment and special interest sessions that play a vital role in enriching everyday life.

The programme includes group physiotherapy, bingo, cards, a crossword club, dog therapy, music and sing-songs, current affairs discussions, spiritual sessions, knitting, flower arranging, gardening, reminiscence sessions, film viewings and much more. The activities coordinators are Engaging Dementia (formerly Sonas) trained and implement the Engaging Dementia group and individual approach.

The Droimnín relaunch was a joyful yet poignant occasion, as the profound grief of those who lost loved ones during the pandemic can never truly heal. Their loss was acknowledged and honoured by the Board of Management, staff and the community, on a day that was just the first of a number of events that will remember those who died. A special memorial mass is planned later in the summer, to commemorate those who passed away during those worst of times.

The entire management and staff team at Droimnín, led by Director of Nursing Camillus Cooke and Assistant Director of Nursing Linesh Chathanchal, will never forget the exceptional support they received, as they look forward to brighter days for their much-loved residents and everyone involved with a nursing home that is truly in the heart of the community.

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