Ikigai – Creating space for the spiritual in social care

An older lady in a group home writes the Japanese word for ‘flower’ in calligraphy, whilst one of her friends chooses what she will cook for dinner: both of them are realising their ikigai. Ikigai is a Japanese word that translates as ‘that which makes one’s life worth living’. The first lady is practising an art form she has developed throughout her life and although, due to dementia, she cannot consistently identify her own family members, she is able to remember how to draw beautiful calligraphy. The second lady, in the early stages of dementia, needs help with some aspects of day-to-day life, but she wants to continue cooking her own food for as long as possible. She has told the live-in carers who support this group of six people living with various stages of dementia, that cooking for herself is important, so they ensure that cooking is an everyday activity and part of her long-term care plan.

Ikigai – Creating space for the spiritual in social care [Thinking Faith – the online journal of the British Jesuits]


One Response to “Ikigai – Creating space for the spiritual in social care”

  1. malka Says:

    this is the answer smaller homes for older people with care and companionship. living with dignity and fulfillment, we should all think about sharing homes with each other, and living as normally as possible for as long as possible as we get older with other like minded people. the large inpersonal business model is a living hell for most old people, time to think again big time.

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