Recreational Activities for the Elderly
Queen of Peace Rehabilitation and Crisis Center initiative for the elderly
During the initial 2020 March lockdown, Queen of Peace was nominated the only and ideal temporary shelter for the homeless and the mentally challenged people within the city of Gweru in the Midlands province of Zimbabwe. In partnership with the department of Social Welfare, the center accommodated 38 homeless and mentally challenged people including 2 visually impaired individuals. The lockdown had affected their access to begging sites and scavenging along dumping sites.
Apart from food provision, a wellness program specifically for those elderly persons to assist them with their physical, emotional, and mental wellbeing was initiated for the lockdown inmates. The wellness program was intended to provide psychomotor activities to individuals whose daily lives had been characterized by aimless movements and foraging.
As Queen of Peace organization, we believe that as we age or become sick, it may be difficult to enjoy our prime favorite activities. Illness or injury can make it difficult to perform tasks that were effortless in the past. Failing eyesight, shaking hands, difficulties to walk and the inability to concentrate make pastimes frustrating amongst a long list of past activities.
Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly
We provide recreational activities daily. Our main objective under this program is to improve the quality of life for our old, aged participants, thus benefiting the physical well-being, emotional health, and cognitive functioning. Daily exercises offer opportunities to socialize with peers particularly of the same age and experiences.
Therapeutic recreational activities at Queen of Peace Rehabilitation and Crisis Center teach new techniques to enjoy familiar activities, prevent physical deterioration, diverts the mind from unhealthy or unproductive thought processes. Most of the homeless elderly clients we assisted spent most of their time sitting or wondering about the streets, as a result of memory loss and burnout, amongst other contributing factors.
The new skills or adaptive techniques we use can be acquired for use at home with family or friends, thus preventing burnout. Our Quality-of-life program extends to family members through our extensions services.
Recreational activities are a good way to practice transferable skills in a non-threatening manner. For example, playing a game that requires the use of fingers and hands gives the participant the confidence to use those physical skills to perform other tasks like dressing or bathing. Participating in recreational activities increases their overall activity level.
We hold monthly physical and psychological wellbeing sports days which is making a greater impact as the demand from our clients is increasing. We intend to extend this program to communities for all ages given the psychological impacts of COVID 19.
Some of these activities like mat making teach vocational skills promoting hand eye co- ordination,self sustainability and offers diversional therapy for some individuals.