Supporting residents, family, and the community at large is an important part of the mission at Residences at Coffee Creek. Through their monthly support group meetings, Residences at Coffee Creek offers an extra layer of comfort and care through education and discussion.
Led by Director of Social Services Rondi Wightman, MSW, LCSW, CDP, the meetings held every third Tuesday of the month are a great way for a family to walk through the aging process together and be met with added support.
“These groups are a way for some of our family members to come in and visit with their loved one and get a different perspective,” Wightman said.
The topics vary and are hand-picked by Residences at Coffee Creek’s very own certified dementia practitioners, to benefit anything individuals and families may be dealing with. Some of the more outstanding topics have been loss and grief, transitional support with dementia, long-term care insurance, the importance of positive energy, senior scams, and creating new holiday traditions. Some of the more unique options included pampering events such as an aromatherapy discussion where attendees each created their own aromatherapy rollerball, or the most recent “Putting the Me back in Merry” where caregivers were treated to chair and hand massages, and a discussion on reflexology.
No matter the topic, each meeting also offers a chance for discussion after a half-hour seminar. With so many residents and family members in the community, everyone has had experiences at varying levels of the aging process, and sharing and networking can be helpful.
“That’s where the support group happens. They’ve heard the presentation and are all on the same topic and can help each other,” Wightman said. “It’s wonderful to have families who have already walked that journey available to support and guide those who are at the beginning of their respective journey.”
Wightman is always open to topic ideas from the residents and the community.
“I’m always excited when the residents have topics they’re interested in,” Wightman said. “If a member of the community has a topic that they are interested in, they can call me and we can see if it’s something we can plan. We want to be responsive to the community.”
Of course, the interpersonal connections at Residences at Coffee Creek don’t just happen at the support group meetings. The little things that the staff do that can sometimes be the biggest support someone might need.
“Sometimes when we support people they don’t even know we’re doing it,” she said. “Sometimes people just need a hug. Physically being there and letting them talk is the greatest support.”
Wightman is quick to assure any new residents and their family that she is there for them and ready to support them in whatever way they may need.
“When new families move in I work hard to make sure that I introduce myself within the first few days as the non-medical person who is there to help them, and to let them all of the programs and amenities available,” she said. It is not typical to have a masters level social worker on staff, yet Residences at Coffee Creek makes sure to go the extra mile to offer that support and bridge the gap that they believe exists when it comes to seniors transitioning into this environment.
The support group meetings take place every third Tuesday of the month from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Chef-prepared refreshments are provided. If you’re dealing with a loved one who is aging or going through memory loss, be sure to RSVP to the next support group at Residences at Coffee Creek. You can find future events at the Residences of Coffee Creek’s website: https://residencesseniorliving.com/residences-coffee-creek/ or by calling 219-921-5200.