Armchair Travel program lets residents explore the world from home

Garden Terrace residents have been enjoying a fun and educational travel program from the comfort of home.

Every two weeks, the life enrichment team at the Kanata, Ont. long-term care home hosts the Armchair Travel program, which introduces residents to different countries and cultures.

During the interactive program held in the home’s theatre, residents learn about the similarities and differences between Canada and other countries as well as about customs and traditions.

A big bonus the program offers is that it’s engaging for team members, notes life enrichment co-ordinator Rachael King.

Since people working at Garden Terrace are from diverse backgrounds, team members, including those working outside the life enrichment department, are often asked to lead the program to teach residents about their roots and culture.

In the theatre room, staff will play YouTube videos that are focused on different countries. Residents are encouraged to ask questions and provide the group with insight into their own backgrounds and traditions.

Some of the countries the program has explored include Brazil, India, the Philippines, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Japan.

Rachael says there is no set way of determining how countries are chosen. Sometimes team members will come up with the theme country, other times residents will make suggestions of the countries they would like to explore.

“The residents love it,” Garden Terrace life enrichment co-ordinator Rachael King says of the program. “They get to go somewhere without going out of the home, and they get to experience different countries.”

Rachael says there is also a reminiscing component to the Armchair Travel program.

“There are many residents from different countries, so they can share their stories and experience, and then the residents can ask each other questions,” she says.

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