May is Older Americans Month, a time to celebrate seniors! This year’s theme for Older Americans Month is Connect, Create, Contribute. As we look at the Friendly Senior Living continuum of caring communities, I am gratified to see so many examples of these ideals brought to life!
At the heart of person-directed care is meaningful engagement of the older adults we serve. Every day, this is achieved in a variety of ways with our Members, residents and patients: through our hands-on care, the conversations we have, the services we provide, the activities that promote participation, the one-on-one interactions. By getting to know older adults, we are enriching their lives—and our own!
It’s never too late to learn something new or to continue pursuing your favorite hobbies! A look at the life enrichment calendars of any of our communities shows ample opportunities to fulfill the physical, emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual and creative needs of those we serve. On any given day, offerings might include art, music, exercise, lectures, outings, gatherings, demonstrations, community service (more about that in a minute!), seasonal and holiday activities, games, current events discussions, storytelling and much more. Further, our Members and residents are encouraged to share their ideas and interests with us so that we can keep expanding our programming.
We firmly believe that it is important to find meaning and purpose in life at any age. Friendly Senior Living Members and residents find satisfaction in giving back through community service. The Friendly Home’s partnership with Joy Community Church in Rochester is a wonderful example. Our Members have collected baby items for those served by the church, as well as food items for Thanksgiving baskets. Each month, a group of Members and staff visit the church to lend a hand with its soup kitchen, bringing with them baked goods and other treats prepared at the Friendly Home by our neighborhood teams. Here’s what a Friendly Home Member has to say about the volunteer effort: “To experience this interaction and see how much it is appreciated is so meaningful to me and other Members. It provides a sense of purpose and meaningful involvement in the community.”
Our Members also make heart pillows for cardiac and pulmonary surgery patients at Rochester General Hospital, bookmarks to support reading initiatives in the Rochester City School District and put their creative talents to purposeful use by making items for a craft sale benefitting the Alzheimer’s Association.
I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank the exceptional Friendly Senior Living staff for living our mission and our values every day! Thank you for making our continuum a special place where older adults can connect, create and contribute.
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