honour residents’ legacies
Meadow Park is looking to change “long term care” to
“legacy teaching culture.”
“Legacy teaching culture” –
honouring the complex histories of residents and celebrating their
experience and knowledge – is part of Meadow Park’s
newly begun “Enchantment” program.
“Life doesn’t end when you walk through
our doors, it’s a continuation of your legacy,” says
Michelle Bronsard, activity director. “That sums it up –
when you come to a nursing home this isn’t the end for you,
it’s a beginning, we want to learn from you, and we want you
to grow too.
Meadow Park kicked off the “Enchantment”
program on Oct. 1 with their first Fall Fair – a large carnival-esque
event held at the London-based home. Family, residents, staff and
the greater public were treated to a day long outdoor fair featuring
carnival rides, cotton candy, a BBQ, and a dunk tank. The unlucky
dunkees included a nurse, a maintenance manager, and a relative
of one of the home’s staff members. 14 local vendors peddled
their wares to the more than 200 local residents who participated.
The kid-centred fair also featured clowns, a magic
show, face-painting and a treasure hunt to retrieve treats and novelty
items buried around the home’s property.
The guest speaker was local MPP Khalil Ramal,
who Michelle says “faithfully” commented on the “Enchantment”
Finally, a symbolic ceremony was held, formally
announcing the “Enchantment” program.
12 residents released 18 butterflies, the symbol
of the “Enchantment” program.
“There’s that old myth that says when
you catch a butterfly and make a wish to it that when you let it
go the wish is taken up to the heavens to be granted by the gods,”
“The environment we want to promote here
at Meadow Park is one where residents can celebrate their legacies,
as well as leave them when they go, and we can learn things from
them while they are here, and for us to provide the best care that
we can for them.”
The program is in its preliminary phases, says
Michelle, with the initial workshops focusing on ways to foster
deeper connections between staff and residents.