Purrfect way to spend council kitty

A councillor has found the purrfect way to support dementia sufferers at care homes.

Monday, 15th April 2019, 3:46 pm
Updated Monday, 15th April 2019, 3:50 pm
Coun Bob Parker and his wife Margaret, Mayor Coun Adrian Cartie, with staff and residents from Ridley Park Care Home.

A chance meeting with a Rotary Club member has led to Blyth town councillor Bob Parker spending his community kitty to buy four therapy cats for those with dementia.

Staff and residents from four Blyth care homes were presented with the battery-operated therapy cats, bought by Coun Parker using his Small Schemes Allowance.

Coun Parker got the idea after bumping into Jean Bell, a Rotary Club member, on her way to Thomas Knight Care Home, who told him about the therapeutic effect the cats had, particularly on people suffering with dementia.

The Rotary Club had bought one, but there were other homes that could benefit.

Town council staff contacted MIND Active, which identified four homes it works with to receive a cat.

The cats, from the Joy For All pet companion range, help to soothe the stress that often accompanies dementia and Alzheimer’s. They move, purr and react to stroking, and when unattended they go to sleep just like a real cat would.

The cats were presented by Mayor Adrian Cartie to officials at Ridley Park, South Bebside, Crofton Court and Chasedale care homes.

Stephen Ward, project manager of MIND Active, said: “We are extremely grateful to Coun Bob Parker, his wife Margaret and Mayor Adrian Cartie for demonstrating their community spirited values with the purchase of these amazing therapy cats.”

He added: “The cats are very popular and have proven to make such a positive difference enhancing the quality of life of our older people within the community.”