Team work sees new shop opened at Fraserburgh’s Faithlie Care Home

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It’s back to work for residents at an Aberdeenshire Care Home, complete with a smart uniform and early morning starts.

Care home resident, Izzy Duthie, 64, gets ready to serve fellow resident, Kathy Duthie, 94.Care home resident, Izzy Duthie, 64, gets ready to serve fellow resident, Kathy Duthie, 94.

From taking delivery of the papers to weighing out sweets on traditional scales, residents at Faithlie Care Home in Fraserburgh have already put their names down on a weekly rota for the new on site shop. And their enthusiasm proves that age really is just a number, with many of the new shop workers age 90 and over.

Faithlie which is run by Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership, is home to 31 residents who come from all walks of life.

For Care Home manager, Claire Birnie, the project has shown the role which Faithlie plays in the local community. There’s been such a buzz about the place, we decided to create a shop within the home following a resident’s meeting,” she said.

Care home residents Kathleen Muir, 92, and Betty Smith, 93, will be working in the shopCare home residents Kathleen Muir, 92, and Betty Smith, 93, will be working in the shopCare home residents Kathleen Muir, 92, and Betty Smith, 93, will be working in the shop

“Some of our residents can’t get out to the shops as easily, and they also really missed the experience of selecting things to buy and having a natter with others. Even our papers just got delivered here, so we decided to shake things up a bit. The dedicated team got to work transforming a storage space into a vintage style shop, which has been adorned with nostalgic posters and wooden display shelves. Everyone got involved, and we have been so taken aback from the many donations,” said Claire.

“Lots of local businesses donated items, and family members of our residents also helped us to create such a lovely and welcoming space. Even some of our residents were in here stripping wallpaper, everyone wanted to play their part.” The shop is now officially open for a business following a special ceremony earlier this week, and there’s been a steady stream of volunteers willing to staff the till. Great grandmother, Betty Smith, has already donned her green apron and plans to work in the shop at least once a week.

Care home manager, Claire Birnie, with resident Betty SmithCare home manager, Claire Birnie, with resident Betty SmithCare home manager, Claire Birnie, with resident Betty Smith

“I’m 93 and a half, and I’ve decided to put my name down on the rota,” she said, “I was always a house wife, and I’m really looking forward to getting behind the counter. It’ll be so handy to have a shop here, and my shifts will keep me busy.”

92 year old Kathleen Muir has also stepped forward, despite the fact she first retired more than 30 years ago.

The shop was previously a storage cupboard, and has been transformed thanks to a team effortThe shop was previously a storage cupboard, and has been transformed thanks to a team effortThe shop was previously a storage cupboard, and has been transformed thanks to a team effort

“I was a nurse and I worked with children who had disabilities,” said Kathleen, “I decided to get involved with the shop because it was something that bit different. It may only be a little shop, but it has everything we need. It has been so nice to watch it take shape, it’s a great thing to have here at Faithlie.” The shop will also be supporting small and independent businesses, with some handmade items on display.

All funds raised from sales will be put back into the shop, alongside the care home’s amenity fund – which is used to support residents in various activities alongside trips out.

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About the Author: Rayne Chancer