Last Updated Sep 14, 2018 · Written by Philippa Land
The latest build from the hipages tradie crew is in Perth, WA for Silver Chain, a charity providing health services for people living with dementia. Dementia is the second leading cause of death in Australia, with an estimated 425,416 people currently living with the condition.
The tradie crew, comprising of a team of local and qualified tradies found via the hipages platform, volunteered their time to build for charitable causes around the country with materials also being donated.
This complete renovation of the Silver chain’s Rockingham centre garden included a colourful shed designed to help clients build on their everyday skills. The yard was also landscaped to make a more dementia-friendly environment.
The reaction from the clients when they saw the finished shed was of pure delight. It turned out to be much grander than they expected, with the centre clients now spending every day outside in the yard enjoying the new shed.
The crew built a small shed to be used as a cafe for clients to practice basic social and life interactions such as buying coffee and bread, as well as giving clients the ability to sell vegetables they grew in the garden themselves. Nine local qualified tradies volunteered their time to build the shed and renovate the garden.
The shed was sketched up from photos sent through by Silverchain. It was then built using standard pine and Western red cedar to include weatherboard cladding with brick paving and a tin roof. When it was first built is was just a wooden shed, but the paint job brought it to life to almost resemble a beach kiosk. Outside the shed is brick paving which extends throughout the yard which was also a major part of the job.
The whole project took 4 weeks with a full team of trades including a carpenter, electrician, paver, roof tiler, painter and some labourers as well as landscaping provided by Bunnings. The shed is built from timber and has shutter windows which open up like a cafe, is 2.2m high by 2.6m wide and painted in bright engaging colours.
Elements of the design and build which were essential to ensuring the overall space was dementia-friendly included the installation of non-slip matting on the floors of the cafe shed, safe flooring in front of the shed for tables and chairs, as well as bench height shelves to serve from. Other renovation elements of the project included a clean-up of the side garden with new flowers and plants, as well as maintenance and a clean up of the raised garden beds which allows the garden to be used for the growing and selling of veggies and flowers.
Silver Chain’s Social Centres offer a comfortable, home-like setting for the organisation’s clients to socialise, relax and have fun with a range of activities to keep them active and engaged. Many of the clients who attend the Social Centres are living with dementia and the centre’s programs help them to maintain their life, social skills and remain living in their own home. In Western Australia alone, Silver Chain helps 98,000 people with health services in their home.
Silver Chain Social Centre Coordinator Mandy Holmshaw said the new backyard is remarkable and already having a positive impact on all our clients.
“Our clients’ response has been unbelievable, for many of them, our social centre is a home away from home and they’ve been out here every day since it opened,” Mandy said.
“It’s important for people living with dementia to have access to facilities like our renovated backyard. It empowers and enables them to set personal goals for themselves so they can maintain their social skills.”
Caring for a person living with dementia can be quite costly, with it being estimated to cost $88,000 annually for a person to be living in residential care with dementia. These findings have to lead to calls for reform of this cost and for extra funding into the disease. Especially with an aging population, it is expected that dementia will double by 2050 with 1 in 3 Australians predicted to develop the condition later in life. Silver Chain’s services and community allow people to continue living in their own home, lessening the cost to support them in residential care.
Larry from Bough House Construction says there are a few things to consider first:
Choose the area you want the shed in well, considering how you will access the shed.
Clear off the build with your local council to ensure it’s in a spot ok for the build, for instance, a shed can’t be built close to a fence.
Consider what you want to use the shed for, if it is to store tools and garden supplies then you could make do with a flat pack shed that is ready to install.
Special thanks to our tradie crew:
And local suppliers:
Bunnings, Remastone, Benara Nurseries, Kennards Hire, Dulux, Alcoa Kwinana Refinery, Outdoor Blind Design and Cleanaway.
Find local Shed Suppliers now