Senior care in the COVID-19 quarantine
Good news from communities across Canada
Seniors living in retirement homes are very vulnerable to COVID-19. Retirement communities have responded quickly and are taking the highest precautions to keep seniors safe. We are deeply grateful to them and to all frontline staff for their commitment in this hour of need. We mourn with families who have lost loved ones or are unable to be near parents and other older family members during quarantine.
Daily life in retirement homes has changed, with limited visitors and few social gatherings. As the quarantine continues, staff and seniors are getting more creative in finding ways to keep spirits high. On this page we highlight how staff are creatively keep residents busy and engaged. Below, find selections from across Canada, on seniors and retirement home staff "getting through this together," in spite of social distancing measures, and worries about the virus. Find out what's happening inside communities below, as people discover alternative ways to stay social, keep active, and find new moments of happiness.
Below, we share some of our favourite stories and posts from social media (so far, that is). We've also separated some categories that show many more examples of the abundant good news from inside retirement communities across Canada.
Find even more good news about senior living in quarantine times:
- Seniors staying connected
- Gratitude for great care and compassion
- Staying healthy and active despite quarantine
- Exceptionally inspirational stories and messages
Symphony Senior Living
CBC carried a wonderful story about Makhena Katerie Rankin Guérin, a health care worker at Symphony Senior Living Orleans who shared her love for traditional dancing with seniors there. "She's definitely going above and beyond right now to try and make sure that these people feel the love," says executive director, Jodi Davidson. Indeed! She loved her people so much she chose to move in with them! Read Guérin's story or watch the interview below. Another true health care hero!
Gratitude for great days at Verve Senior Living
Coach Reg has an inspiring message for everyone! Guts... and teamwork! Yes sir!
P.S. Reg is one of our favourite "take things head on" seniors, here at Comfort Life.
Balcony dancing by Tapestry makes the local newsAt Tapestry at Arbutus Walk, in Vancouver they found a way to combine wellness with physical distancing, in an utterly unique way. Zumba-dancing residents were so good they made the local news in early April!
Check out the video below:
Letter to the editor, from Oceana PARC senior
Ben wrote a letter to the editor of a local paper, to praise PARC Retirement. Even though he and friends "miss visits from family," they are still happy and "blessed to live in such vibrant and safely-run communities."
PARC Retirement Living's Facebook page is brimming with good news and timely updates.
At Delmanor communities, inspired living continues
Delmanor Glen Abbey is one of the most spectacular golf retirement communities in the country, but alas, residents have been unable to get out on the course and enjoy the game they love. This gentleman, for example, really wanted to at least work on his putting game.
No worries, said team members! They sprang into action and installed an impromptu golf green right in his suite! It was the perfect solution, and he was thrilled with the ability to work on his putting. Suffice it to say that he looks like he's enjoying his social isolation as well as possible!
You can find many similarly happy posts on the very lively Delmanor blog.
Celebrating birthdays while keeping social distance
At Thornebridge Gardens in New Westminster, Enid used Zoom to celebrate her 100th birthday(!) with family. Staff at the community, meanwhile, all wished her a happy birthday from outside. View the LinkedIn post.
At V!VA Mississauga, senior resident Jack's family came out to celebrate his birthday and brighten his day, while still keeping their social distance. "You can't change the strength of love we have for one another."
Check out the good news Facebook post.
Check out fellow resident Mary's message of hope and gratitude.
At Westerleigh PARC in West Vancouver, Bill celebrated his 92nd birthday. Sure to honour social distancing measures, his daughter, Barbara, dropped in and sang happy birthday over the phone and in-person through the bistro window. "How sweet!"
Check out the original post on LinkedIn.
Kingsbridge Retirement Community by Signature Living Corporation accepted the #safehands video challenge and created a bit of a avalanche of hits on YouTube. #togetherathome #bewell #kingsbridge #catchthebeat #kingstonontario #Quarantineworkout #safehands
Watch the video below!:
Schlegel Villages says "Thank you!"
Schlegel Villages put together a suitably long series of videos that fully expresses all the thanks due to front-line caregivers in their communities. Watch the full five video playlist below!
Esprit Lifestyle Communities gives thanks
Inside Sifton Westhill, "staff has been amazing"
Bill Klos, a resident at Sifton Westhill in Waterloo, tells us that he is spending most of his time in his room, “trying to read,” to be safe. The community is “running as many [indoor] programs as they can” to keep residents busy. If residents leave the building, they must self-isolate on their return, to protect their peers from the virus. While the situation has been challenging, Bill adds, “I will say that the staff has been amazing. They go out of their way to be positive and helpful.”
V!VA la bonne nourriture!
At the Meadowlands in Ancaster, they celebrated Cinco de Mayo with some Mariachi and some comida mexicana! They even shared their V!VAlicious Mexican recipe for Barbacoa Tacos with Pico de Gallo from their executive chef, Jamie Smye.
Wonderful care from Bayshore Home Health Care
Shirley* is one senior getting care at home from Bayshore Home Health Care. She suffered a stroke and came out of the hospital about mid-March. She is still getting some in home help through the LIHNs and hired Bayshore to work different shifts, including overnight. “Staff have been wonderful,” she says. They’re taking necessary pre-cautions by offering the same caregiver for as many shifts as possible. They come into Shirley’s home, wearing all the protective gear required, including masks, gloves, and gowns.
*name withheld for privacy's sake