How are retirement villages putting safety and security at the forefront?
In March 2023, ExtraCare carried out research into what our current residents across our integrated retirement communities value the most. We gave 158 participants a list of 13 answers which they prioritised in order of importance for them personally.
The list of answers (in no particular order) were:
- Safety & security
- Independence & control of own life
- Positive community
- Wellbeing & care
- Friendliness & companionship
- Certainty & peace of mind
- Trust of those around me
- Range of choices & variety
- It’s in the right location
- Financial security / predictability
- Health activities
The top five answers (in order) came out as:
1. Safety & security
2. Independence & control of own life
3. Friendliness & companionship
4. Certainty & peace of mind
5. Wellbeing & care
These results support the concept that when we age, safety becomes a paramount concern for many. This is where retirement villages are quickly emerging in the UK as popular options for retirees seeking a safe and secure home.
However, at ExtraCare we understand that “safety and security” can mean different things to different people, so we have covered some of these possibilities in the article below.
Professional staff and security measures
Retirement villages employ dedicated staff members who play a crucial role in maintaining a safe environment by overseeing security measures, emergency response protocols, and general wellbeing. They ensure that residents are provided with prompt assistance in case of medical emergencies, accidents, or any other urgent situations.
Across ExtraCare’s twenty integrated retirement communities (IRCs), only 20% of residents are in receipt of care, but the addition of trained professionals onsite in case of an emergency can bring peace of mind and provide reassurance.
One of the primary safety features of retirement villages is controlled access. Every ExtraCare location have doors that restrict entry to individuals without authorisation, reducing the likelihood of people wandering onto the premises. Retirement communities often utilise technology such as access cards or electronic key fobs to manage entry points. By implementing access control measures, this creates a secure environment for residents, promoting a sense of peace of mind as well as exclusivity.
Community support and social engagement
Safety in retirement villages goes beyond just physical security. The strong sense of community and social engagement adopted in these communities play a significant role in residents’ overall feeling of security. Social activities, clubs, and events not only promote a healthy lifestyle but also create an environment where residents can look out for one another.
An ExtraCare resident’s daughter says: “My mother lives at Pannel Croft and her move there has been life changing. Now having easy access to a whole community of new friends, quick and easy access to onsite activities and services has given her new independence.”
Maintenance and accessibility
Retirement villages provide maintenance services, ensuring that facilities are well maintained and meet safety standards. This includes regular inspections, repairs, and adaptations to accommodate mobility challenges. By prioritising maintenance and accessibility, retirement developments mitigate potential hazards and ensure that residents can move around safely within the community.
An Earlsdon Park Village resident says: “I love living here in the village, there is lots of entertainment if you want it. I have made many new friends. I have my dog with me, I feel safe and free from the usual household problems, life is good.”
In conclusion, retirement villages have evolved into secure and vibrant communities that prioritise the safety and wellbeing of their residents. With professional staff, controlled access, emergency response systems, healthcare services, and a strong sense of community, retirement villages provide a supportive and secure environment for retirees. Ultimately this enables residents to enjoy their retirement years with peace of mind, knowing that safety measures are in place to address their unique needs and provide assistance whenever necessary.
Embracing the concept of healthy ageing, retirement villages exemplify the value of safeguarding residents’ safety and enhancing their overall quality of life.
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