Keeping care home residents connected with family members during the COVID-19 crisis is essential to their wellbeing.

Erika Burany, marketing manager, elderly channel, Unilever Food Solutions, explains:
“Staying in touch with loved ones isn’t always easy for residents. With physical and verbal interactions limited in the current, unprecedented climate in which our nation finds itself, it’s tougher than ever for those living in care settings to communicate with friends and family.”

The iconic food company has dug down into its archives and created an engaging set of postcards using historic adverts, to help care staff to encourage residents to reminisce about times gone by. The postcards can then be used to write notes on the reverse to family and friends, providing reassurance at a difficult time.

Unilever has also produced a how-to guide for video calling. “Video-calling technology is the ideal way for residents to stay in touch with the ones they love and will benefit their mental wellbeing but it can feel daunting too,” continues Erika. “That’s why we’ve put together a beginners guide to video calling, which will walk staff and residents through the steps to success – no matter what device they choose to use.”

Themed food events are a great way to engage with and entertain care home residents.

With this in mind, Unilever has created a series of free, downloadable recipe cards, taking your residents on a culinary journey around the world.

July’s adventure is to the USA with a three-course meal plan, along with an all- important hydration element. The American Independence Day menu comprises of corn chowder, BBQ pulled pork and a sweet key lime pie.

In addition, the website also includes information to support care home caterers during the pandemic.

Alex Hall, executive head chef, Unilever Food Solutions, says: “During these uncertain times, elderly care home kitchens may need to bring in additional staff, either to cover sickness or employees who are having to self-isolate.

We have created a number of supporting materials from agency checklists to convenience recipe guidelines to upskill and support chefs.”

Keeping spirits high and minds active during times of isolation is crucial. Puzzles offer the perfect solution.

To aid and support care home residents, Unilever has also created three downloadable original puzzles in large print to help keep minds busy and spirits high, along with crosswords, wordsearches and sudoku.