In assisted living communities across the country, activities directors are working hard to keep residents busy and happy, providing a wide variety of things to do, while also encouraging them to make friends and maintain vital social connections.
Most directors offer the traditional favorites, like Bingo, trivia, birthday parties, and pet therapy. They also offer a number of new, creative possibilities too, like senior proms, iPad classes, and intergenerational programs.
It’s important that activities staff regularly check in with residents and their family members for input and feedback. Doing so ensures a well-rounded social calendar based on the life histories and previous/current interests of residents.
Even if residents never attend a formally planned event, a community setting like assisted living provides plenty of opportunities for social interaction outside of the activity room: chatting with neighbors in the dining room, talking to volunteers who come in to visit, interacting with staff members that they see on a regular basis. In addition, Skype, Facebook, and other types of technology connects residents to family and friends near and far.
Don’t worry if your loved one doesn’t participate in every (or any) activity listed on the monthly calendar. It’s likely that he or she is still making those all-important social connections anyway.