‘Tis the season to be jolly, but for many residents in assisted living facilities, the holiday season may conjure up feelings of sadness and isolation.
After all, many of these residents are away from their families or are completely without one. Having to be alone on an occasion that is normally spent with loved ones is a bleak prospect.
Bring in some necessary cheer with these tips and ideas on how to create a positive holiday experience for your assisted living residents!
1. Organize a few holiday-themed events.
The holidays are all about gatherings and parties. Your residents should not be left out of all the fun. Plan events that they can participate in and enjoy: karaoke nights, Secret Santas, and special holiday dinners. Make sure to include them in the planning and preparation as well! They can help with the cooking, plan for group performances, and maybe even decorate the ‘venue.’
2. Plan holiday-themed daily activities.
Cookie baking, decorating, making holiday cards, knitting – let them bask in the full holiday spirit by incorporating holiday-themed activities into their daily schedules. Pick out activities that would remind them of holidays at home.
There’s nothing simpler or more effective at turning on the holiday spirit than decorating! Whip out the trees and the menorahs, polish the ornaments, and dust off the stockings for the mantel. Have your residents participate in the decorating process too. It will uplift your residents’ spirits and let them know that their help is still needed and valued.
4. Bring in people who want to help.
Since the holidays invoke the spirit of giving, there will always be individuals and organizations that will want to extend helping hands. Invite them to bring in extra doses of cheer and merriment to your facility.
5. Encourage an atmosphere of giving.
Speaking of giving and helping, the holidays are also a perfect time to give your residents the opportunity to help out. Create charitable activities that they can participate in: baking cookies for the local shelter, knitting bonnets for the babies at the NICU, painting/writing holiday cards for soldiers stationed overseas, etc. It will definitely boost your residents’ morale to know that they are making someone somewhere happy.
6. Recreate a home-like atmosphere.
Your assisted living facility is their home now. It’s only right to transform your facility into a place that would remind them of all the good memories of their holidays at home. Prepare traditional holiday meals. Distribute comfy holiday sweaters and quilts. Have stockings with everyone’s names on them. Bring the best of the holidays into your facility.
Holidays in assisted living can be just as cozy, cheery, and merry as the ones at home – and the key to achieving that is in your hands. Cheers and happy holidays from Unitex!