Issue 31

Activity Coordinators

A big hello to all patients that already know who we are; and a big hello to all new patients who have joined us here at The Caswell Clinic.
The Activity Coordinators (ACOs) were appointed in 2001. This post was developed by the Nursing Department at The Caswell Clinic. The intention was to improve patient opportunities to engage in meaningful activities both within the clinic and the wider community.

The ACO role was developed to meet the workforce modernisation agenda. It served to create a more flexible worker who was fit for purpose and meet the needs of the service users.

The ACO is supernumerary to ward establishments and therefore able to work with greater autonomy. They offer a service on weekends and out of office hours. They extend the social, recreational and occupational opportunities of patients at the clinic.
We are a small team, there a 5 of us all together, Janette, Dale, Craig, Nadine and Gareth. We offer a wide range of structured activities for you all to enjoy, such as;
Social Evenings in the café, which include bingo, general knowledge quizzes, TV sport, games, film evenings and karaoke.
Gym sessions and other sports are offered to all patients throughout the clinic to help promote a healthy lifestyle.
5 a side football is available twice a week; this takes place out on the Astroturf.
Music tuition is offered in a group setting or on a 1:1 basis.
Variety Shows
Fundraising events such as summer and Christmas fetes, Raffles and in the past there has been an occasional boot sale.
All the money raised is used for all patients' benefits such as items for the Clinic Café (TV Projector).

Other groups include Swimming, Women's groups, Relaxation/Indian Head Massage, Cycling, golf, Snooker in the community, metal detecting etc
Every weekend we also offer a number of different community leaves for the patients to participate in. Friday morning is a shopping trip which gives the patients an opportunity to be able to buy the things they need. It also helps the patients to gain social skills and helps them to manage their own finances. Popular destinations for these trips are Port Talbot, Talbot Green, Swansea, Neath, MacArthur Glen and many more. Saturday is a Rambling Trip, this gives patients the opportunity to enjoy some fresh air and also enjoy the exercise while taking in the surrounding views.
Sunday morning is a low stimulus leave which could involve brisk walking around places of interest such as Cardiff Bay, Mumbles, Swansea, Porthcawl and Aberavon Beach (weather permitting).  If any of you are interested in getting involved in anything which has been mentioned, ask staff to contact us and we would be happy to come and chat to you and explain anything which you're not sure of.

Welsh Health Minister Edwina Hart praised mental health and learning disability nurses from South /West Wales for their hard work at the annual mental health and Learning Disability Nursing Awards for Wales. The Activity Coordinators at Caswell Clinic won 'Best Healthcare Assistants' award for ABM University Health Board. (20 April 2010) Dr Ed Roberts, vice Chair of Abertawe Bro Morgannwg Health Board, said:

"I was present at the Awards Ceremony when it was announced that the Activity Coordinators at Caswell Clinic had won the Best Healthcare Assistants category. The high standards and achievements being set by staff in Mental Health and Learning Disabilities in ABM and across Wales were very apparent, and our Healthcare assistants should be justifiably proud of their success. We as a Board value, recognise, and applaud their work and commitment and add our congratulations to those they received at the awards ceremony."