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Helping Isolated Seniors Adjust to Senior Living

Adapting to senior living

Courtesy of Era Living, Julia Goldie and Seth Hutchins join Suzanne to talk about Social and Occupational Wellness, part of the Vitality Revolution podcast series sponsored by Humana. Seth is a social wellness expert, a licensed mental health therapist in the state of Washington, and Julia is Life Enrichment Director at Era Living’s Aljoya Thornton Place in Seattle.

In this segment, Julia and Seth address concerns for helping isolated or depressed seniors adapt as they transition to a senior living environment. Every situation is different, but often it’s common that they’re moving during a major life transition in overwhelming circumstances. Seth says, “We try to be very aware of that, and very sensitive to that. I think that residents are impressed when they find that there is a staff member onsite who is a licensed social worker or therapist. It’s a really unique characteristic of Era Living. Obviously they really value mental health; it’s important.”

Julia adds, “We sit down with every single resident when they first move in. We do an interest portfolio on them. We ask about their background: where they lived, what their hobbies are, what they did for volunteer work, you name it. And if they were married, if they have children, things like that. We do it in a very casual conversational way, so that we get to know them, and then we also give them the opportunity to know us. We look at what their interests are and then we literally go through our activities and find out what points of interest they have. And we explain that more, and we explain which people they can find in those activities. They might have already started establishing some friendships. It’s like, hey, there’s a bridge game. You love to pray a bridge, and we need a fourth person. All of a sudden you feel that connection.

“And from there, we are able to kind of take a look and create an individualized kind of plan for them moving forward, and let them know that we’re here for them. If they have questions as they get more situated, but it is very individualized. It has to be. And that is where we find the most success in that one-on-one relationship early on.”

Hear more:
Social Wellness episodes: https://answersforelders.com/vitality-revolution/social-wellness/
Occupational Wellness episodes: https://answersforelders.com/vitality-revolution/occupational-wellness/
Era Living episodes: https://answersforelders.com/era-living/

Learn more about:
Vitality Revolution podcast series: https://answersforelders.com/vitality-revolution/
Humana: https://www.humana.com/
Answers for Elders: https://answersforelders.com/welcome-to-answers-for-elders/.
Era Living at Answers for Elders: https://answersforelders.com/era-living/
Era Living’s website: https://www.eraliving.com/
Aljoya Thornton Place: http://www.eraliving.com/communities/north-seattle/

Answers for Elders is part of the SeniorResource Network: https://www.seniorresource.com/