A Kenilworth day centre for the elderly is appealing for more people to try it out after visitor numbers have fallen in the last year.
Staff at Waverley Day Centre is concerned people perceive it negatively after it recruited Admiral Nurse Louise Gillard-Owen, who helps families cope with relatives living with dementia, in March 2016.
But the centre has suffered a drop in people attending over the last year, and the centre’s manager Anne Cross wanted to try and encourage more elderly people to come.
Anne felt the drop in visitors was based on two things - some of the centre’s regulars either moving into home or passing away recently, and people’s perceptions that the centre only looks after people with dementia.
Although Louise’s appointment was celebrated by the centre’s staff and trustees at the time, Anne felt her appointment may have inadvertently distracted people from the other the services the centre provides.
She said: “We had a big launch of the Admiral Nurse last year. She’s done a great job and a lot of enquiries we get are through Louise.
“But that’s only one section of the support we give.
“We very much think of it like a club - it’s where people come for sociability and good company.
“And we’ve had many people’s wives and husbands having a day out when their partner is at the centre - it provides respite.”
Included in the day price, which ranges from £20 up to £36 depending on the level of individual care needed, are transport, tea and coffee on arrival, a hot home-cooked two course meal and a variety of activities before transport home.
Less well-off attendees can apply to Warwickshire County Council to pay for the service, depending on their income and needs.
Activities held at the day centre include board games, musical events, quizzes, nail care and seated exercises.
There are rooms where people can spend quiet time with a book or a magazine if they choose but visitors often get involved with the group activities.
The centre is open four days a week, Tuesday to Friday, with 25 places per day. There are places available every day although Tuesday is the most popular day.
Anne added: “We aim for 20 people a day, and up until a few months ago we hadn’t got that.
“We’ve had three new members sign up, so we’re coming into a good time.”
In a previous interview when the Admiral Nurse service was launched, the MP for Kenilworth and Southam Jeremy Wright said the centre has been ‘a rock for the elderly community in Kenilworth for a long time’.
Anne said anyone was welcome to drop in to have a look at the centre, but anyone wishing to have a meal should book in advance.
Anyone wishing to try the centre out or find out more should contact Waverley Day Centre directly on 01926 852365.