Dementia Day Care centre purchases virtual reality headsets

·2-min read
Sam and Pam - using the new headsets
Sam and Pam - using the new headsets

DAYS at the Haven Dementia Day Centre, is excited about its latest purchase - two virtual reality headsets.

The headsets allow the clients' imaginations to "run wild", exercising the mind and stimulating old memories.

They have arrived at the Westcliff base in Hamlet Court Road's Haven Community Hub thanks to Skipton Building Society Charitable Foundation.

The Dementia facility is run by Age Concern Southend (ACSOS), also located in the same venue.

The Day Centre offers care through a varied activity programme designed to improve client’s health and wellbeing and offer daily respite care for carers and loved ones.

Elizabeth Smith, Community engagement manager at ACSOS said: "We believe we are the only dementia day centre locally offering this unique immersive experience. These headsets will allow our clients to experience a virtual word where they can let their imagination run wild.

"There is a wealth of experiences available to explore together. They can visit beaches, major tourist attractions, calming forests, relive their youth through 1930-1950 experiences, listen to calming music as an audience member, sculpt and paint, play dementia friendly games and relieve famous sporting events…all from the comfort of an armchair.

"In addition to clients benefiting from the new software, virtual reality also provides a unique training opportunity for the staff at ACSOS. Staff can use specialist apps that allow us to experience the world of someone living with dementia."

Pamela Harvey, Day at the Haven Centre manager added: "Through using virtual reality tools, we can learn more about our clients lives and provide them with a fun and exciting new experience.

"This is a truly unique and innovative offering for the day centre and we really hope the equipment will stimulate our clients to recall old memories and prompt wider discussions in the group.

"We are continually looking for new activities and facilities to provide our clients and enrich their lives. We can’t wait to see them enjoy these too."

To learn more about the dementia day centre and Age Concern Southend’s services, visit or email

The centre currently has availability from £35 for half day sessions and £65 full days.

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