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Jean 8th Feb 2022 Activities Coordinator
Looking for your thoughts and input on the following. I am an activities coordinator in a home of approx 45 residents, most of whom have dementia. I have trained (L3) and worked in this role, in this home for 5 years and apart from emergency cover and annual leave etc. I was on a fixed rota doing 37 hours a week. We have a large number of staff at the moment and several of the staff have been asked to work shifts in my department in order to make up their contract hours, my hours have been cut down to 24 hours per week, I find that acceptable and I am enjoying more time off, however I am not on a fixed rota anymore and now go into work 10AM to 4PM x 4 days a week. How does this work with regard to CQC? When I did my training I was taught to put a program in place and advertise what I was doing on a notice board. Obviously I can't do this if I am not on a fixed rota, do you think CQC will be sympathetic? I can plan for the days that I am at work and for 2 weeks at the most, the rest of the time I don't know who will be helping me or doing the days that I am not there. I am grateful that there is someone there for the residents when I am not, planning has become impossible though.
Susan 9th Feb 2022 Activity Director
Hi Jean
I am from the US
Can you please tell me what rota and CQC mean
I was in a somewhat similar situation
I was on salary and working 40 hours a week and being paid for 40 hours
Then they cut my pay to 32 hours a week
Was expected to do everything that I did before but really was not possible
So I guess you are lucky that there are people that will fill in for you
But who knows if they will do the job
I hope you’ll be able to ask the residents and other staff what they think is going on
Let me know what rota and CQC mean so I can be of some more help
Jean 10th Feb 2022 Activities Coordinator
Hi Susan, My rota is the days that I am allocated to work (I am more familiar with it as roster but in the UK they use this term) CQC is the independant 'body' that audits/inspects our care homes to ensure we are maintaining a acceptable standard. I think it is Care Quality Control. The girls that stand in for me are carers so they know the residents. I support them with information, advise and any products that they may need to do an activity but none of them has an activity qualification. I know that I will work 4 shifts a week but from week to week the days change and I feel that by losing the 'planning' I have lost all 'continuity' I can't give them a program of activities as they tell me they can't do the the things that I do and as long as they are with the residents I think that it is good for them to do what they are best at. I have asked them to give me an idea of what they did so that I don't repeat it the very next day. (If they have played balloon handball I wont do it the very next day) I think it would be much better if we knew which days we were working and it was the same each week eg myself on Sunday & Monday then Wednesday & Thursday each week. The residents enjoy us all but from 1 week to the next we are doing different days. The Manager has told me that CQC will want a fortnightly program, I have explained to her that I can only tell her what I am doing on the 4 days that I am in (whichever days those are). The explanation that she gave me was that she didn't want me to work 'thousands' of hours. She knows that I can manage on the 24 hours she has given me but I believe continuity in the program is important. Nothing is going to change at the moment as she is quite determined so perhaps I am worrying too much about it! If CQC were to come in and ask me I can only show them my program and if our rating was to go down because of it it we would just have to accept it. I'm going on an awful amount about it but it is irritating as all this, along with all the COVID guidance too!
Susan 10th Feb 2022 Activity Director
Wow Jean
This is a lot of information to think about that
So let me do that and I will get back to you
In the meantime just keep on doing what you do
Susan 11th Feb 2022 Activity Director
Hi again Jean
After giving your situation some thought here is what l came up with
First if your boss is inflexible which it sounds like she is you have to make the best of a less than ideal situation
Unless you think you can change her mind
You may have to take a hit from theCQC
I had something happen to me and the department got tagged so then things changed
First to make a Calendar you will be very general about things such as let’s get physical for physical activities which could be whatever you do
You will have to talk to others doing activities and find out what and when they do them
You may just put a.m. and p.m. on the calendar
If you have a particular activity you do but it is somewhat general you might want to put explanation of it on the calendar
Here is some thing I did CAM=Customized activity medley which consists of 5-
60 minute 1:1, small and or EErge group activities which may include but is not limited to card, dice or other games movement activities, prayers or other religious offerings, arts&crafts, independently or staff directed looking at magazines, puzzles, light touch massage or other sensory stimuEEtion, life skills, jokes, trivia reminiscing or other discussion groups, sing a longs and other music groups, snacks or other food groups
You may want to put down TV programs that they watch on Calendar
I always like to use independent leisure activities as a general name
Why not look at the sample calendars on this site
The ones I contributed are the last ones

I hope I made myself clear but if you have questions please ask
If you want to take a closer look at the calendar I contributed give me your email and I will send them to you
There is a weekly one and a monthly one

Jean 14th Feb 2022 Activities Coordinator
Thank you for your support and your ideas. I am going to 'keep my head down' and do what I can. I had an opportunity to share my concerns with one of the duty managers, she understands where I am as she spends more time on the floor. I will also look at the sample calandar that you have referred me too. On the positive side I worked this weekend and have had a lot of 'job satisfaction' from it. It is the little things that count, yesterday I put on some music and at least 5 residents spontaneously started singing. Today we finished off a craft session that was started last week and the residents were excited about the results.
Activity coordinators are quite isolated and that is why this site is soooo good, giving us a 'shoulder to cry on' Thank you.

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