Each year in September, one week is set aside to officially celebrate the assisted living community. While we try to celebrate the senior living community every day of the year, our communities especially look forward to planning for National Assisted Living Week.
About National Assisted Living Week
National Assisted Living Week (NALW) was established by the National Center for Assisted Living in 1995.
“[NALW] provides a unique opportunity for residents, their loved ones, staff, volunteers, and the surrounding communities to recognize the role of assisted living in caring for America’s seniors and individuals with disabilities. The annual observance encourages assisted living communities around the country to offer a variety of events and activities to celebrate the individuals they serve, as well as to help educate members of the public about this distinctive aspect of long term care.” – National Center for Assisted Living
This year, NALW takes place Sunday, September 10 – Saturday, September 16, 2017. This year’s theme is “Family is Forever.”
Image credit: National Center for Assisted Living
Planning Your Celebration
Are you looking forward to celebrating the caregivers in your life, but don’t know where to start? We’ve compiled a list of ideas to help inspire you!
Established by President Jimmy Carter in 1978, National Grandparents Day is the first Sunday after Labor Day. This year, the holiday falls on Sunday, September 10, 2017.
Here are some facts about grandparents, according to the United States Census Bureau:
- In 2015, an estimated 7.3 million grandparents lived with grandchildren under the age of 18
- Also in 2015, an estimated 2.6 million grandparents were responsible for the basic needs of one or more grandchildren under the age of 18
- The same year, an estimated 1.5 million grandparents who were responsible for their own grandchildren under the age of 18 were also in the labor force
This year, celebrate Grandparents Day and NALW making a visit to your local Senior Living community. Take time to interact with the residents and try to learn more about their long (and undoubtedly interesting!) lives. Often, children are fascinated to learn about how different grandparents’ lives were when they were young.
Surprise your local Senior Living community by dropping off some sweet treats. Residents and caregivers alike enjoy sweet surprises—even better if they’re homemade!
For example, Hope Memory Care in Dacula, Georgia is celebrating their community by bringing in local vendors, food, and sweet treats every day!
The Gift of Relaxation
Everyone loves a spa day! Why not treat your local Assisted Living community to one? Reach out to local massage therapists or chiropractors and see if they would be willing to donate their time to provide free massages to residents and staff.
Alternatively, work with your local Assisted Living community to plan a Spa Day, complete with manicures and facials. Both guys and gals love to be pampered every once in awhile!
Education and Awareness
National Assisted Living Week is a great time to learn about different resources available to seniors and their families.
This year, reach out to local community organizations to see if they have events or workshops scheduled. If not, it might be a great opportunity to put them in touch with your local Senior Living community to get something in the works!
On Thursday, September 14th, Northshore Senior Living in Knoxville, Tennessee is hosting a complimentary dinner and wine workshop titled, “2017 Changes in Social Security: Will it be there for me when I need it?” Find out more about this event on their Facebook page.
Sports lovers come in all ages, and with fall weather comes the start of football season! For National Assisted Living Week, why not help plan a Tailgate Party to support your local team?
On Thursday, September 14th, Alexander Guest House in Oak Ridge, Tennessee is planning a “Tennessee Tailgate Party,” complete with food, beverages, games, trivia, prizes, and more. Find more information about this event on their Facebook page.
Grab Your Dancing Shoes
One thing we’ve learned over the years is that our residents and staff love to cut a rug! For NALW, why not work with your local community to plan a dance party?
Fun and games aside, one of the most important things that assisted living residents crave is companionship. In fact, depression in assisted living residents is a serious concern and should be addressed immediately.
A great way to celebrate National Assisted Living Week is to simply visit your local senior living community and interact with the residents. Play a game of checkers, comment on the local news, or even ask someone to tell you about their favorite memory. Who knows? You just might be the highlight of someone’s week!