Czech Republic

Pétanque fields, gardens and an improved summer house for seniors

Jana Beránková

This year Aspen’s team from the Czeck Republic supported the Gerontological Center in Prague. Established in 1992, this center has gradually expanded its services and activities for seniors aged over 84 and currently specializes in social, cultural, psychological, cognitive and biological aspects of aging.

The facility provides full time as well as daycare services. There are 14 patients who are accommodated on a permanent basis. Most of these patients suffer from dementia and they require full-time nursing assistance and rehabilitation.

The daycare center accommodates some 15 patients who return to their home each evening. These seniors suffer from less severe dementia, but they are still partially independent or have loved ones to care for them in the evenings.

Three groups of volunteers set to work at the center. While one group took care of repairs and painted the benches and the summer garden house, others attended to the rusty fence and the driveway.

Pétanque is a French game of bowls that the senior guests enjoy playing although the field at the center was in serious need of attention. Volunteers improved the playground by replacing the sand, removing all the weeds and preparing an additional field where the game can be enjoyed. In addition, solar lights were installed so that full time residents could enjoy the outdoors and play pétanque after hours.

Loads of new plants, shrubs and flowers were also added to the garden and, while the team eventually returned home feeling rather weary, they were delighted to have been able to bring pleasure to these residents who had enthusiastically been watching the developments taking place at their center throughout the day.