WE all know that a smile can go a long way.
To help promote the therapeutic benefits of humour and make aged care a bit more playful, the Humour Foundation will be offering its Laughter Boss Workshop to aged care providers in and around Hobart.
The workshop teaches aged care staff fun and practical skills to help them use play and laughter in their everyday work.
Elder Programs Relationship marketing officer Rebecca Yeomans said it was an “innovative and progressive” approach to aged and dementia care.
“The Humour Foundation understands the challenges faced by aged care staff,” she said.
“The full-day workshop aims to help participants understand the concept of using play to promote humour in their daily work.
“This helps build concentration, develop better relationships and faster well being, not only with the residents they care for, but also fellow colleagues.
“You don’t have the be the most outrageous in your facility to be a successful laughter boss.”
Ms Yeomans said the therapeutic benefits of humour were well known.
“Sharing a smile and a laugh connects people, lowers stress, reduces anxiety, relieves tension, boosts the immune system and creates an atmosphere of positivity and warmth,” she said.
“During the workshop we look at evidence-based research to establish the therapeutic benefits of laughter, both physical and psychological.
“However, most of the day will be spent with participants exploring practical games and activities designed to demonstrate how play can make a real difference to the lives of residents in aged care.
“The workshop is a really fun and informative day, with feedback from past participants overwhelmingly positive.”
Bev Mewburn, whose late mother was a participant in the pilot program, said it was good to see the Laughter Boss Workshop had grown into such a success.
“It was so inspiring to see the laughter boss dressed up and interacting with the residents and putting a smile on their faces,” she said.
“I found Mum was always in a better frame of mind when things were happening around her and it certainly made her interact and laugh a lot more.”
The Laughter Boss Workshop will take place on Friday 25 September from 9.30am to 4.30pm at the Battery Point Community Hall, 52 Hampden Road, Battery Point.
Aged care staff in Hobart and surrounds can contact the Humour Foundation directly to register for the workshop at firstname.lastname@example.org or on (02) 8978 4500.