Aged care residents take part in world-first Laughter Care program

Heritage Care, which owns and operates 11 aged care homes in Victoria and NSW, is partnering with The Humour Foundation to engage, uplift and improve their quality of life of residents.

The initiative, said to be a first, is taking place at Heritage Epping, in the suburb 18km northwest of Sydney’s CBD.

“Our mission as a residential aged care provider is to be the best at everything we do for the benefit of the community. Forging strong partnerships helps achieve this,” a Heritage Care spokesperson said.

“Our unique partnership with The Humour Foundation is a great example of the work we’re doing to provide residents with rich wellbeing environments, lifting sprits and improving health through insightful connection, creative play, and joyful humour.”

Heritage Epping includes a memory support unit catering for people requiring high dementia care – including humour therapy through Laughter Care.

Residence Manager, Julio Castillo, felt the power of Laughter Care lies in its ability to connect with dementia residents through humour, stories, and play.

 “What’s important is that our residents have someone who listens and helps maintain their dignity,” he said.

Laughter Care, which meets ACQSC (Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission) standards, empowers residents by honouring and celebrating their capabilities through music, dance, props, stories, improvisation, and reminiscence - resulting in increased wellbeing, quality of life and enhanced interactions with their families and staff. 

Positive results include reduced depression in residents, reduced behavioural disturbances, improved quality of life and happiness, greater staff job satisfaction, and increased interest in the residents as unique individuals.  

Lauren, Heritage Care’s dedicated and highly skilled Laughter Care Specialist, said people are accepted for who they are, here and now.

“I love creating positive resident outcomes,” she said. “Stepping into our resident’s world relaxes them and helps them interact on their own terms.”

Watch the video here:

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A special thanks to our contributors

Caroline Egan

DCM Media, agedcare101

Caroline has a wealth of experience writing within the retirement and aged care sector and is a contributing journalist for the and agedcare101 blog and accompanying newsletters.

Ian Horswill


Ian is a journalist, writer and sub-editor for the aged care sector, working at The DCM Group. He writes for The Weekly Source, agedcare101, and the DCM Institute fortnightly newsletter Friday. Ian is in daily contact with CEOs of retirement living, land lease and the aged care operations and makes a new contact every week. He investigates media releases, LinkedIn and Facebook for a good source for ideas for stories.

Lauren Broomham

Retirement and Aged Care Journalist

Lauren is a journalist for, agedcare101 and The Donaldson Sisters. Growing up in a big family in small town communities, she has always had a love for the written word, joining her local library at the age of six months. With over eight years' experience in writing and editing, she is a keen follower of news and current affairs with a nose for a good story.

Jill Donaldson


Jill has been practicing as a clinical physiotherapist for 30 years. For the last 13 years she has worked solely in the Aged Care sector in more than 50 metropolitan and regional facilities. Jill has also toured care facilities in the US and Africa and is a passionate advocate for both the residents in aged care and the staff who care for them. She researches and writes for DCM Media.

Chris Baynes

DCM Media, agedcare101

Chris has been a journalist and publisher in the retirement village and aged care sectors for 11 years. He has visited over 250 retirement villages and 50 aged care facilities both within Australia and internationally. Chris is a regular speaker at industry conferences plus is a frequent radio commentator.

Annie Donaldson

Nurse and Carer

Annie has a long career in both nursing and the media. She has planned and co-ordinated the medical support from both international TV productions and major stadium events. In recent years she has been a primary family carer plus involved in structured carer support.