Norma is 65 years old. She lives in the community with her caregiver Paul. Her family and friends form a strong support system around her. Norma was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease and has been coming to the Adult Day Program at St. Joseph’s Villa for the past 10 years. The Villa’s Day Program offers four unique, engaging group programs to adults in our community (Hamilton). Working with our clients and their supports, our qualified team creates interactive daily experiences that aim to optimize each person’s physical, social, emotional and intellectual wellbeing. What makes our Adult Day program different is that we fully embrace the person-centered philosophy of care. One of our program’s Recreational Therapist, Stephanie Young explains: “We get to know our clients very well, what they like and dislike, what they are passionate about. We ask them what they want to do and we give them options. We listen to their feedback”. Norma’s caregiver agrees:” It is clear to me that the staff is caring and well trained, and deal with a diverse group of adults. In my view, the Adult Day Program is rather unique and could act as a model for similar programs”.
For adults with various levels of abilities, like Norma, Adult Day Programs offer a safe place where people can engage in activities that support their overall well-being as well as offer respite to their family/support/caregivers. Paul noticed a huge impact on her moral since she has been coming to the program: “For Norma, the program has saved her life, in that it has allowed her the ability to function outside of an institution”.
Norma loves the consistency of the program and the variety of activities that help sharpen her physical and cognitive abilities. She particularly enjoys trivia games where she can use her knowledge about many subjects, drawing from her rich experience traveling the world and a nursing career.
Thanks to United Ways, people like Norma who are more at risks for social isolation, can participate in programs allowing them to develop a sense of community in an environment that is safe and caters to their needs. For Norma, the program is a great social environment where she meets her friends and makes new ones.