Ivy Breach 1914 - 2003
...the inspiration behind the name
Meet Ivy Breach
Ivy, our namesake, the grandmother of Jane Lowe the Founder, Director and Dementia Consultant of Ivy House.
Born 1914 in Northwich, Cheshire, Ivy spent her childhood with fond and humorous memories. Life changed for Ivy when she met a soldier, her soldier, 'Blue Eyed' Jack, it was love at first sight and the love of her life. They began their married life at Birling Gap and started a family, they resided in the village of East Dean and remained there for the rest of their years, nestled among the strong community that still stands today.
Ivy developed Alzheimer's in 1995, back then there was very little provision for Dementia; it was all very institutionalised care. Ivy was not recognised or acknowledged for the great character, wife, mother and grandmother she was which had a profound and devastating effect on Jane. Determined that we should see the person and acknowledge the person not just the Dementia, Jane created Ivy House in her grandmother's name.
This is her legacy!
Jane, rejecting the notion that people with dementia are happy to sit in front of a television all day, Jane focused on developing a space where they can thrive. Combining cognitive therapy with a programme of activities, support groups and events, in 2010, Ivy House opened its doors. Since then, the team of dedicated care ‘companions’ has grown from strength to strength and Ivy has gained a reputation for “seeing the person and not the dementia”, and since continue to improve the quality of life for those living with dementia.
Based in Herstmonceux, Hailsham, the day care provision at Ivy House includes a lively programme aimed at those not ready for a traditional care environment. Sessions are built around attendees themselves, and through detailed discussions with individuals, provide a direct link with their own hobbies and interests. With an emphasis on fun, engagement and confidence building, the Ivy team’s personal approach is delivering something unique and valuable to people with dementia. It is also offering an essential lifeline to family members who may not be able to cope with a caring role.
Jane Lowe is a regular speaker on the subject of dementia care provision, both locally and nationally and is a strong campaigner for government and community support for people with dementia.