Video games boosting wellbeing of Life Care residents
Published: 28 Jun 2022
Turning grandparents into gamers – an Australian-first initiative is helping older South Australians embrace technology to boost their mobility and support their cognitive function.
Brought into residential aged care by not-for-profit provider Life Care, Obie is an interactive projection system displaying moving images onto tables and floors with cameras and sensors detecting residents’ movement as they play along.
It was first used in early childhood education and the technology’s all-ages and all-abilities appeal is producing benefits for ageing residents, with Life Care the first Australian aged care provider to implement Obie in a residential aged care setting.
With 60 games to choose from, including bingo, frogs on a pond, playing a piano or soccer, to raking up autumn leaves, flying across a foreign landscape, there’s a game to suit any interest.
Life Care personal trainer Cezary Pawlisz says Obie makes technology simple for residents, with colour, movement and music sparking smiles, memories and connections amongst residents.
“As a PT, I help physiotherapists bring clients back to as good a physical shape as we can and Obie is a good tool for that because they don’t require resistance, they work purely by body movement and you can choose a game to focus on a particular body part, such as the shoulder and set the level of difficulty,” he said.
“Often I see a smile and a laugh as they try to chase things across a screen, it’s a fabulous tool and the residents love it.”
Obie is also bringing generations together, situated in a common area so that when families come to visit children can play along with their grandparent or great-grandparent.
After a successful trial at Glenrose Court in Glen Osmond, Obie has been rolled out to Life Care’s other residential aged care homes – Gaynes Park Manor in Joslin, Parkrose Village in Everard Park, Aldinga Beach Court in Aldinga Beach and Reynella Lodge in Old Reynella – as well as its respite cottage Norman House in Everard Park.
About Life Care:
Life Care is a South Australian not-for-profit provider of aged care services including residential aged care, independent living, home care and respite. These services are offered across nine locations – Aldinga Beach, Christie Downs, Reynella, Mitchell Park, Everard Park, Glen Osmond, Joslin, Modbury, and Balaklava.
The organisation employs more than 800 staff, supported by 170 volunteers, and has been delivering care to older South Australians for more than 70 years. Visit www.lifecare.org.au for more information.
Ben Smeaton – firstname.lastname@example.org or 0488 940 010