Bereavement Coordinator Terry Beck signed up to assist with the activities department at the Broen Home. She saw a need to help residents feel cared for and connected and filled it. She made the day of a handful of residents after a short conversation one afternoon.
Terry was visiting with a few residents one day and started to engage her expertise. She considered the trauma some residents may be experiencing as they’re following guidelines to mitigate contracting or spreading illness during the COVID-19 pandemic. One conversation led her to engage the activities team to bring a series of smiles to the faces of residents.
One of the residents Terry met with shared a significant loss. The resident described the joy she had in sharing meals with a handful of friends on her floor. Part of the MDH recommendations to mitigate the spread of illness during this time is to serve meals to residents in their rooms. This resident shared that she missed her friends.
Terry shared her conversation with the activities team, who quickly sprang into action. The team collected a number of tablets and brought them to various rooms. The activities team linked the tablets together in a Zoom conference video call. When the residents saw each other on the screens they squealed with joy. The activities team smiled, touched at how a simple video call could be so connecting for the residents.
The residents commented on their own appearance, pointing out new wrinkles they were discovering as they saw themselves in the video call. They shared some simple memories with each other, laughing as the conversation darted from one subject to the next.
Smiles lingered as the video conference ended. The staff met briefly in the hallway, celebrating the joy in helping a few residents feel more connected during a time of social distancing.