A total of 12 dwellings in Düsseldorf and Bamberg in Germany were included in the project as test sites. The tenants were senior citizens, people with dementia, and families with children, and all of them tested around 200 different solurions that support living at home. In addition to the test sites, the innovative solutions were showcased to the public in the Sophia Living Lab test environment in Bamberg. Since its completion in autumn 2012, the 120-square metre Sophia Living Lab has had over 2,000 visitors.
Stove guard ranked as the number one innovation in the project
The project team installed a range of services and innovations that promote independent and safe living in the test dwellings. Joseph-Stiftung created a dementia package of the solutions that were the most relevant from the point of view of memory disorders. The dementia package enables, for example, monitoring room temperature. This is important because a person with a memory disorder might adjust the heating up on a hot day, resulting in increased heat risks and decreased living comfort.
A survey on the popularity of the tested innovations revealed that Safera’s stove guard was the assistive tool that appealed to the residents the most. All the 12 households within the project wanted to continue to use the stove guard, and the tenants felt that it improved safety and living comfort extremely well. Thanks to the positive feedback from the tenants and the popularity of the product, Safera’s stove guard is now an important and integral part of Joseph-Stiftung’s dementia package.
“The results of the research are in line with the experiences of the tenants. The reception of the stove guard was even more positive than we expected,” says Julia Siebert, Project Assistant, Smart Living at Joseph-Stiftung.
Safera’s stove guards prevent accidents
Julia Siebert explains how the stove guard works in practice: “One of our tenants left the stove on several times in six months, usually after picking up the telephone during cooking. The alarm on Safera’s stove guard activated every time, preventing the potential threat. Our tenants consider fire such a serious threat that we do not really need to market the stove guard to them. The solutions included in the dementia package are also a source of reassurance for the tenants’ families.”
Jürgen Nitschke, Director of Smart Living at Joseph-Stiftung, is satisfied with the Safera Siro R stove guard: “We tested different products available in the market and found Safera Siro S to be exceptionally reliable and functional. We think that a stove guard is an important innovation that can benefit both people with memory disorders and children with families by improving their safety. This is why we have decided to equip all our rental flats with stove guards.”
So far, Joseph-Stiftung has installed stove guards in approximately 30 households. All installations have gone well and the tenants consider the price of the stove guard to be appropriate.
In the future, Safera’s stove guards will be marketed in Germany under the Hager brand. Hager’s stove guards will be powered with reliable Safera technology.
Insurance companies say ‘yes’ to stove guards
Insurance companies have also noticed how well stove guards can prevent accidents: “Almost all the insurance companies we have contacted have reacted well to products that support independent living at home and cover some of the purchasing costs of the devices,” Jürgen Nitschke notes happily and shares his vision for the future: “It will be interesting to see how stove guards will develop and how new innovations will hopefully integrate them into living environments and building technology.”
The Joseph-Stiftung is a church housing company located in Bamberg, Germany. The company is one of the biggest housing firms in Bavaria administrating with about 12.000 dwellings in the metropolitan area of Nuremberg. The business includes the building of houses and freehold flats for private purchasers as well as the building of social property (nursing homes for elderly people, etc.), in particular for church institutions.
Sophia Living Lab
A living environment originally built within the EU-funded I stay@home project by Joseph-Stiftung for the purpose of investigating and supporting the opportunities for elderly people to live at home. At Sophia Living Lab, the innovative solutions that improve living comfort and safety were also showcased to the public. At the moment, the 120-square metre space is used as a residential flat.