Lynn Haley Kane knew the Arbors was the right place for her mom, Janet. They had spent a year researching assisted living communities, and Janet had spent time in a respite stay apartment at the Arbors at Westfield.
Now, Janet was officially moved into her new home at the Arbors, and it was time for Haley Kane to drive away.
Despite living only 10 minutes away, it was still a little nerve-wracking for Haley. Before she even pulled into her driveway, she received a text message.
“Within minutes of her Lynn leaving, Janet was downstairs playing the piano having a great time,” says Alicia Dessereau, marketing director at Arbors at Westfield. “So we took pictures and sent them to Lynn: Your Mom is OK. She’s playing the piano.”
Family Taking Care of Family
That’s pretty standard among The Arbors’ 11 assisted living communities. A family-owned and -operated business, The Arbors team members take pride in welcoming residents and their loved ones into the family.
“Once a family comes through my door, they're part of my family forever,” says Ashley Harris, marketing director at the Arbors at Winthrop. “If I see their mom having a blast, I’ll shoot them pictures.”
“In terms of care, we all sit down a few times a week and go through each resident to make sure they’re doing all right,” Harris continues. “If we notice any change, we immediately notify their family. They’re always kept in the loop.”
Not only can families expect pictures, but each community also sends out a monthly eNewsletter that recaps the goings on, profiles a resident, and shares other news tidbits.
Family Events and Programs
Each Arbors community also hosts a variety of activities programs that family and friends are encouraged to attend.
For example, in September 2018, the Ivy at Ellington concluded its National Assisted Living Week celebrations with a family picnic, followed by a visit from Nana’s Ice Cream Truck and a magic show by Mr. Magic.
“Family events like this, as well as our weekly socials, allow our residents and their families to come together with staff and their families to get to know each other and spend time as one big, happy Ivy family,” Bianca Syriac, marketing director at the Ivy at Ellington, wrote in the newsletter. “Here at the Ivy, family always comes first. As a family-owned company, we truly value family bonds. We welcome every new resident, staff member, and their family members with open arms.”
Come On Over!
Not only do the communities plan family events, but they also encourage families and friends to stop by and say hi to their loved ones regularly.
“We have families that come and sit and hang out and play cards,” Dessereau says. “We have a poker table and a pool table. We want the whole building to be an extension of the residents’ home. I want them to sit in the sunroom or the courtyard or the patio.”
Harris adds: “They could play horseshoes in the courtyard or pool in the lounge. We have a movie theater and a pub. Residents and their families are always out in the community common areas just interacting, having a sip of coffee by the fireplace. Our chef was born and raised in Italy, so families come in and have a delicious meal or partake in happy hour.”
Nervous No More
About a week after Janet moved into the Arbors, Haley Kane stopped by for dinner with her mom. As the mother and daughter were leaving the dining room, one of the cooks said, “Good evening, Mrs. Janet!” Haley responded with surprise, “You know my mother’s name?” To which the cook responded, “Of course, I know her name!”
Harris isn’t surprised to hear this.
“We love your loved one like an extension of our own family,” she says. “They know that we are a family company, and we actually mean it.
If you want to learn more about how The Arbors supports family caregivers, download our eBook How Moving My Loved One to the Arbors Eliminated My Caregiving Challenges.