By Karen Buchanan, Friendship Manor Assistant Administrator
Pets, plants, and kids are all things that bring richness
to our homes and personal lives, aren’t they?
While our Leadership Team was holding its Monday morning meeting this week, one of my coworkers glanced out the window. “Is there a dog parade happening or something? Look at all the dogs coming in the front door!” It was not a parade, though—just some therapy dogs that make a regular stop to visit their friends, our residents. Pets are part of life at Friendship Manor—an independent living resident I’ll call Rita used to walk her cat down the halls on a leash, a concierge team member sometimes brought her little dog to greet folks at the front desk, and an activities team member’s pup enjoys coming along to work once in awhile to show off how she’s grown. A previous nursing team member once brought in members of her menagerie for a little petting zoo out front—that was a lot of fun. Our memory care unit hosts a large aquarium and residents from Independent Living or Assisted Living like to help feed the fish in our koi pond out front. Our skilled nursing unit features an aviary with tiny, brightly colored birds flitting about.
A resident I’ll call Pete works every summer with our grounds crew to maintain a tomato garden out back. I’m a gardener myself and know the soul-settling pleasure growing plants can bring…and when does a person feel richer than when sharing the bounty of the harvest? Come August or so, fresh tomatoes often show up at the concierge for the taking for anyone who needs a big juicy bite of sunshine.
Students from local schools come by regularly to sing for our residents—one of my personal favorites among these are the Christmas carolers. At Halloween, staff kids parade through as residents pass out candy, oohing and aahing over the costumes. Residents light up when they meet the kids. Coming soon, Friendship Manor has another project in the works that would integrate children with our residents, partnering with an early childhood education center to benefit their kids and our residents, as well as team members.
Loneliness, hopelessness, and boredom don’t stand a chance against seniors when kids, plants, and pets are integrated into their lives. These are just a few of the reasons that Friendship Manor “feels like home!”
Whether the Friendship Manor or another community is the best choice for your next home, they are here to assist you throughout your journey. Feel free to give us a call at 309-786-9667 for any questions you may have or to take a tour!