During this time of social distancing, we strive to maintain a sense of normalcy and routine for the individuals we support. Although visitation has been restricted and day programs and community outings remain suspended, managers, clinicians and frontline staff take great care to manage the situation creatively and foster a positive and engaging environment.
To maintain contact with family and friends, the residents have the opportunity to communicate regularly through video chat using applications such as Zoom or FaceTime. Several families have done drive by visits where they can wave to each other and chat from a distance. In addition, some families have ordered takeout meals for the residents or provided them with home cooked meals, which they deliver to the doorstep.
As the weather gets warmer, residents are turning to the outdoors for a source of leisure. Individuals have been eating their meals outdoors as often as possible and going for local walks. Gardening has been a popular activity at Gray, Lehr and Auerbach, as well as at Marcy, where the residents also painted birdhouses. At Florida Rd and East basketball has been a preferred outlet. At Auerbach, individuals had a video party on the lawn.
Some residences have gotten creative with in-house parties. At Rivera, the residents celebrated Cinco de Mayo with a delicious spread of food. At Grasso, dance competitions and costume parties keep things lively. Dance has also been a fun way to keep moving at Lehr and at West. Residents at Lissauer and Bernstein have turned to online exercise classes to stay active. Puzzles, baking and arts and crafts have been popular activities amongst many of the individuals, especially at Frankel. No matter where an individual’s interests lay, staff work hard to provide opportunities for them to enjoy themselves and feel a semblance of normalcy as we navigate this challenging time together.
UPDATE ON GARDENING!
Recently residents harvested kale and zucchini and soon tomatoes and peppers will be ready to incorporate into fresh, nutritious meals for the residences.
Liz Dama is making her famous pesto from the abundance of basil in the herb garden and soon there will be a kale cook-off.