COMMEMORATING INDIAN INDEPENDENCE

Residents at a Wellington care home have been waving the flags in celebration of the 71st anniversary of independent rule in India, with traditional Indian dance, costume, food and music to mark the occasion.

Independence Day (15 August) – an annual national holiday in India commemorating the nation’s independence from the United Kingdom – is now a regular fixture on the cultural events calendar for Camelot House and Lodge.

Activities co-ordinator, Richard Dempslake, said: “Our residents who are living with dementia always thoroughly enjoy it when we organise a day with an international theme. Some of them have said it’s like going on a day’s foreign holiday.

“Since we are lucky enough to have staff of Indian descent at Camelot House and Lodge, we are able to provide an authentic international experience for them.

“Our ladies love dressing in colourful saris, and some of our gents have also entered into the spirit of the day by wearing kurta pyjama suits.“

A highlight of Camelot House and Lodge’s India day was a display of traditional Indian dancing, led by Avtar Panesar.

Avtar, who is of Indian descent, said: “My wife Anne and I have been doing Indian dance classes for about two years because – while we live in Somerset, which we love – we wanted to remain in contact with my culture and spread the joy and happiness of Indian dance.”

In advance of the event residents were involved in decorating Camelot House and Lodge in traditional Indian fashion, and on the day they enjoyed the dancing, and sampling a variety of Indian dishes specially prepared for them in-house.

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