Home and Community Based Services in Minnesota – “Community Engagement”

Home and Community Based Services in Minnesota – “Community Engagement”


[Music]
Narrator: Wherever we live, we’re part of the community.
From rural farming communities to urban cities and our local
neighborhoods. How we each engage in our
different communities varies, but it’s an experience
that we all share. In Minnesota, choosing where to
see a concert, visit a doctor, cut our hair, grab a bite
to eat, or what community activities and events to attend,
is how we stay engaged and form relationships with other
people in our community. Socialization and community
membership is an important part of maintaining social health. Here are some ways providers in
Minnesota are supporting people to engage in their community
and explore new interests. [Music] Carli: We encourage our
residents that live here to participate in any of the
community events that, that are happening in Glenwood. Our town is really known for its
summer festival, so we get our residents involved by
participating in the parade. We have a king and queen that
ride in the parade every year and several of our residents
have been fishermen their whole life, spent a lot
of time on the lake. So we do like to get our
residents out on the lake. We use a program called “Let’s
Go Fishing” which was designed for that very purpose. You know, I think people
sometimes think of seniors as sort of separate, but really
it’s just all of us at an older age. It’s just good for
emotional, spiritual mental health, for people to
just be engaged in the community at any age. [Music] Cory: A great community partner
is important to STEP mainly because it provides our
consumers with opportunities to do different things that would
not be provided in center. STEP is engaging clients in the
community in a variety of ways, you know it could be something
as simple as taking them to the local cafe to have coffee every
day, or traveling to local businesses in the community to
see how they work, but really we’re proud of any relationship
that we develop in the community, whether it develops
jobs or just provides our consumers with an opportunity
that they wouldn’t have had. And so like you know, my only
recommendation would be try to learn from others, for success
stories and integrating people in the community and just, and
really try to implement that in whatever way fits
your organization. [Music] Barbara: Being a community
partner is beneficial for the consumers that we serve. Working on building those
relationships with other businesses within the community
will help them be successful in the long run. When you can contribute and be a
part of a community, especially one that you live in, that
you’re proud of, and love being in, that it just helps
for a more grounded better lifestyle for them. We’re a lake area, so we do have
a lot of beaches and parks in the area and we work really well
with the city and the county and provide services to
keep those areas clean. So we’re out at the boat
landings, and emptying garbages, planting flowers, picking up
trash, making sure that areas are clean, and look really good
for our people who partake in those opportunities. [Music] Amanda: Being a good community
partner helps everyone, and when our residents here at Pathstone
can collaborate with people from the community everyone benefits. A few of the things that we’re
most proud of is our Aktion Club, that works with our local
Kiwanis group, and also our writers group that collaborates
with Minnesota State University. Wilbur: It’s all about enhancing
the lives of the elders who live here, and that’s
really important to me. And so I was warmly welcomed
here as a volunteer, and as a member of our Kiwanis Club in
Mankato to start an Aktion Club. Leah: So once a year with our
writing program we have a public reading, and when we first
started the residents were really nervous to read their
stories out loud, but as the years have gone on I’ve seen the
confidence of the residents be able to read their own stories
in front of the public. Isabelle: We all have a chance
to read our, what we have written, and that’s a great
educational thing too I think. Linnea: I believe that, groups
like this one, the creative writing group is very helpful
for the residents here because I hear residents say that they
remembered something that they hadn’t thought about in years. Isabelle: This program is great. I just, I didn’t think I could
ever contribute anything but I think I have, brought
back so many memories. Wilbur: They have something to
teach me, and I have something to bring to them, and I
love that mutuality of community engagement. Dorothy: If the other community
retirement centers here would be interested in hearing how
positive this is, because anybody I tell, they say “Oh
my word, that’s wonderful!” Isabelle: And I’ve
enjoyed it so much. This club has been
very important to me. Amanda: It’s a great
collaboration between our residents here and
our volunteers. [Music] Lisa: Every engagement that we
have in the community builds another connection and those
connections lend themselves to jobs for people we serve,
volunteer positions for people we serve, relationships with
people in their own communities, and so that community
part is so important. Tyler came to us, he was looking
for a job through vocational rehab. He got employed at Pizza Ranch
in Monticello and, he came to a point where he didn’t think he
had enough to do, so he is now volunteering down
at Lakeside Oasis. Tyler: Back when I first
started, I was just doing like lots of room visits, and
lots, and lots of shadowing and things like that. But now I’m helping the Chaplain
with the morning announcements, along with his on-site church
services that he does, as well as still doing room visits
and things like that, and many other things. Stacy: I can tell you that the
residents really enjoy seeing his smiling face in the morning. They actually tune in it seems
like a little bit more to the announcements because they’re
excited to what Tyler might bring to the discussion and our
announcements in the morning, it’s a lot of fun! Lisa: Tyler is a great example
of how someone who’s come forward and said “I’m
bored here, I want to do
something else. Where can I volunteer, what can
I do?” And we’ve been able to work with him and
make that happen. He has made connections so well
that they are looking at paid employment for him now
at the nursing home. Tyler: It makes
me feel so happy! [Music]

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