By Jane Verity © Dementia Care International
During a trip to New Zealand, I visited Carter Court Rest Home at Carterton and was absolutely fascinated by the tables they use in their dining room. Sally Fenwick, Director of Nursing, had these clover-shaped tables made especially for her rest home. She explained that the tables can also be made in a larger version to seat six people.
The advantages of the clover-shaped table are many:
- People can sit in really close to the table – in wheelchairs too.
- It is easier to eat a meal without spilling food or drink on clothes.
- The tables are safer with no sharp corners. (Sally actually said that they have cut down on accidents.)
- It is easier for each person sitting around the table to define their own personal space thus preventing difficult behaviour.
- The social aspect of dining is enhanced because people sitting around a clover-shaped table can be closer to each other. Having one’s own intimate little group creates more spontaneous conversation.
- These tables encourage a friendlier atmosphere that you can’t help but notice the minute you walk into the room compared to dining rooms featuring the regular or rectangular variety.
If anyone knows of a company producing a table like this within Australia, or importing it, we would be very appreciative if you would let us know.
Plus – A Great Tablecloth Tip!
Since it is hard to find tablecloths for clover-shaped tables, here is a great tip from Karen Demellweek, General Manager at Good Shepard Lodge, Queensland. Karen uses felt-backed vinyl, which she cuts to the exact shape of the clover and then sticks to the table with double-sided tape.
Just a little reminder from Jane to avoid patterns when choosing your vinyl or cloth. Instead, choose a plain colour that will provide a good contrast to the colour of the plates you use in your home or facility.