Riverview team dedicates Butterfly Run to residents who’ve experienced child loss

‘We are their voice today’

DOURO-DUMMER, Ont. – Riverview Manor team members participated in the five-kilometre Peterborough Butterfly Run April 30 in support of families and individuals who have experienced the loss of a child, miscarriage or infertility.

As much as the Riverview team – dubbed the Riverview Baby’s Breath – was walking the paths of the Robert Johnston Eco-Forest Trail in Douro-Dummer Township to raise money for people who have recently experienced such loss, they were also there to support some of the residents they care for, says Tammy Colman-Sadd.

Tammy, the director of care at Riverview Manor, notes there are residents of the home who know the pain of child loss, and many come from a time when such things weren’t discussed.

Some still find it difficult to talk about the loss of a baby, she adds. There are long-term-care home residents who have experienced child loss and miscarriage who never shared the trauma they went through with their surviving children, Tammy says.

Staff members sometimes learn about such trauma when residents quietly share their experiences decades later, she notes.

A bereaved mother herself, Tammy knows the pain of child loss. She also knows how important it is to talk about the grief that comes with losing a child rather than hiding it.

The Riverview Manor team’s walk was dedicated to those residents who still cannot talk about their loss.

“We are their voice today,” Tammy, who organized the walk for the Riverview team, told The OMNIway before the start of the event.

Nine Riverview Manor team members participated in this year’s Peterborough Butterfly Run. At the time of this writing, there is still money to come in and team members say they expect about $1,000 will be raised for local families and individuals.

As with the past two years, the Butterfly Run was virtual to enhance safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of having many teams participating at the same time, teams from across the Peterborough area were allowed to complete their walk or run between April 24 and May 1.

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PHOTO CAPTION: Riverview Manor team members pose for a group photo during the Peterborough Butterfly Run at the Robert Johnston Eco-Forest Trail April 30. 

Resident and staff booster vaccinations nearly complete at Riverview Manor

Peterborough Public Health Unit commended for helping get everyone their doses

Riverview Manor residents and staff members have been rolling up their sleeves and getting their booster shots to protect them from the COVID-19 virus, and the latest round of vaccinations is almost complete, says Becky Dennie, the Peterborough long-term care home’s infection prevention and control (IPAC) lead.

At the time of this writing, the majority of eligible residents have received their fourth round of vaccinations. The rounds of staff vaccinations have been going well too, with almost all expecting to receive their third dose and in the coming days, Becky says.

So far, about 90 per cent of residents have received their fourth vaccine dose and almost 100 per cent of staff members have received their third immunization.

Ontario long-term care workers are mandated to receive their third vaccination dose by March 14.

Aside from the buy-in from residents, their families and staff members, Becky says collaboration with the Peterborough Public Health Unit has also ensured the process has run smoothly.

“Our public health unit has been very good at coming in and assisting us,” Becky tells The OMNIway, adding the public health unit has helped make the process seamless.

“Peterborough Public Health has been a great partner and they’re extremely helpful. Anytime we have a question we can reach out to them and they are quick to respond.”

On its website, the Government of Ontario underscores the importance of people being vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.

“COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective and the best way to help protect yourself, your loved ones and your community from the spread of this deadly disease,” the website states.

“The majority of Ontarians are now fully vaccinated. This is great news and has opened the doors for Ontarians to get back to safely doing many of the things they’ve missed.”

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Learning opportunities and new challenges have highlighted new role, says Riverview IPAC lead

The IPAC lead position is ‘here to stay and it’s probably even going to grow more,’ says Becky Dennie

Six months into her role as Riverview Manor’s infection prevention and control (IPAC) lead, Becky Dennie says she has enjoyed learning more about infection control and taking on new challenges that come with the position.

Infection prevention and control has always been a strong point of focus in long-term care, but it has become more important than ever, given the challenges homes across the province face due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Becky says, adding she has had a strong support network to help her adapt to her new role.

“I enjoy new challenges and learning about new things, and there has been a lot of support from home office as well as (from outside of OMNI Health Care) so there are all kinds of support systems in place,” Becky tells The OMNIway.

The IPAC lead, a position now required in all Ontario long-term care homes, is responsible for protecting residents and staff members from infections as well as preventing the spread of infections if they occur.

IPAC leads must also implement infection control practices that comply with ministry standards – such as cleaning and disinfection protocols – and conduct audits to ensure there are no infection control breaches in the long-term care homes where they work.

With frequent policy changes related to the COVID-19 pandemic, IPAC leads are also responsible for keeping track of ministry directives and sharing information related to new directives with their co-workers.

IPAC leads must also complete an accredited IPAC course.

Becky, who has served in several roles at Riverview Manor, including as a registered practical nurse and the Behavioural Supports Ontario (BSO) team lead, says that while infection prevention and control has always been important in long-term care homes, the pandemic has heightened the need for even more proactive approaches to infection control.

“This is a new and different position,” she says. “We have always had infection control, and we have always had a lead (in that area), it’s just now a little more in-depth since COVID began, and anything infection-control-related is a huge focus right now.”

Looking ahead, Becky says she expects IPAC leads will become increasingly more visible in Ontario long-term care homes.

“It’s here to stay and it’s probably even going to grow more,” she says.

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Return of important events mark 2021 at Riverview Manor

From the fun to the sombre, the safe events the home hosted this year brought some things back to normal during the pandemic

With pandemic restrictions easing in 2021 due to high vaccination rates and safety measures in place, Riverview Manor resumed many of the holiday events residents at the Peterborough long-term care home enjoy, and the home’s life enrichment team was there to organize activities and make them safe and enjoyable for all.

In May, the life enrichment team organized a Mother’s Day photoshoot for the Riverview Manor ladies in front of a backdrop of a spring blooming tree mural. Using residents’ photos, life enrichment aide (LEA) Adam Wicklum made two Mother’s Day collages, one for each side of the home.

The power of attorney of residents who had their photos taken received an e-mail with an attached photo of their loved one just before Mother’s Day.

When Mother’s Day arrived, all the ladies received a Mother’s Day card and a corsage. A large “Happy Mother’s Day” lawn sign was put up at the front of the home. Residents and staff could see the sign from both dining rooms.

Halloween is another favourite occasion at Riverview Manor.

Adam, along with LEAs Rosemary Roseborough and Trevor Davis, and personal support worker Robin Willar, were busy at Halloween organizing parties for the north and south neighbourhoods.

Along with Halloween refreshments, the life enrichment team organized several activities and games for the parties, including Halloween bingo, jack-o’-lantern match-up, a Halloween crossword and several word games.

“Residents enjoyed themselves; many of them wished it was longer,” Adam said. “All in all, it was a spooky Halloween season for the residents.”

Riverview Manor also hosted its first Remembrance Day service since 2019, thanks to a collaborative effort among residents, families and team members.

Unlike past Remembrance Day services at Riverview Manor, this year’s memorial did not feature involvement from the community due to pandemic restrictions still in place.

However, with everyone working together, Riverview residents were provided the same Remembrance Day service itinerary as always, said LEA and service organizer Rosemary Roseborough.

Residents and staff members were involved with the service, which included laying the Remembrance Day wreath and readings. Music normally played on pipe or piano was played on CDs during the service.

This was the 20th anniversary of Rosemary organizing the Remembrance Day service at Riverview Manor, an honour she says was made possible by strong collaboration from everyone.

“It was a great team effort from everyone, and I could not have done this without the support from everyone else,” she said.

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PHOTO CAPTION: Riverview Manor resident veterans Joan Brownson and Frank Lindsay lay a ceremonial wreath at a Remembrance Day service at the Peterborough long-term care home.

Riverview Manor residents, staff and families collaborate to deliver Remembrance Day service

‘It was a great team effort from everyone’

Riverview Manor held its first Remembrance Day service since 2019, thanks to a collaborative effort among residents, families and team members at the Peterborough long-term care home.

There was no Remembrance Day service at Riverview Manor in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but with a green light to host a service this year, everyone came together to ensure this important day was honoured at the home.

Unlike past Remembrance Day services at Riverview Manor, this year’s memorial did not feature involvement from the community due to pandemic restrictions still in place.

However, with everyone working together, Riverview residents were provided with the same Remembrance Day service itinerary as always, says life enrichment aide and service organizer Rosemary Roseborough.

“In other years there would have been a bagpiper and representatives from the legion, along with representatives from the different branches (of the Canadian Armed Forces),” Rosemary tells The OMNIway.

Residents and staff members were involved with the service, which included laying the Remembrance Day wreath and readings. Music normally played on pipe or piano was played on CDs during the service.

The service also honoured two people who passed away in 2020 and are missed at Riverview Manor.

Master Corporal Maury McCrillis of the Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment, who had been the bagpiper at past Remembrance Day services, passed away in May of that year. Pat Byatt, a Veterans Affairs liaison, passed away in August 2020.

Riverview resident veterans Joan Brownson and Frank Lindsay wore their military uniforms and gave readings and dedicated the Remembrance Day wreath.

Family members also helped residents get ready for the service, Rosemary notes.

This was the 20th anniversary of Rosemary organizing the Remembrance Day service at Riverview Manor, an honour she says was made possible by strong collaboration from everyone.

“It was a great team effort from everyone, and I could not have done this without the support from everyone else,” she says.

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PHOTO CAPTION: Riverview Manor resident veterans Joan Brownson and Frank Lindsay lay a ceremonial wreath at a Remembrance Day service at the Peterborough long-term care home.

Halloween festivities deliver lots of fun and laughter at Riverview Manor

‘All in all, it was a spooky Halloween season for the residents’

Halloween was so much fun at Riverview Manor this year residents didn’t want it to end, says life enrichment aide (LEA) Adam Wicklum.

The life enrichment team at the Peterborough long-term care home created two fun, engaging parties that gave all residents a chance to dress up and enjoy lots of Halloween-themed activities.

Adam, LEAs Rosemary Roseborough and Trevor Davis, and personal support worker Robin Willar were busy over the Halloween weekend organizing parties for the north and south neighbourhoods.

Residents living in the north neighbourhood had their party on Oct. 30, while the south neighbourhood celebrated on Oct. 31.

Residents wore Halloween hats and staff members wore costumes. Team members decorated the home with jack-o’-lanterns and a large Halloween mural that residents created in the days leading up to Halloween, Adam notes.

At the parties, residents had the choice of a Halloween cocktail or beer. There were also Halloween-themed decorated cupcakes and cake cones, as well as Cheezies, onion rings and corn twister chips for everyone to enjoy.

The life enrichment team organized several activities and games for the parties, including Halloween bingo, jack-o’-lantern match-up, a Halloween crossword and several word games.

There were also card games that were given a Halloween twist, such as playing “go cat” instead of go fish and “oh mummy” instead of old maid.

Residents also enjoyed watching Halloween-themed movies.

Halloween is a favourite time of year for many Riverview Manor residents, and Adam says he is pleased the life enrichment team was able to deliver memorable Halloween events.

“Residents enjoyed themselves; many of them wished it was longer,” he says. “All in all, it was a spooky Halloween season for the residents.”

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In-house entertainment returns to Riverview Manor with safety precautions in effect

‘Residents enjoy musical entertainment so much and are very excited that it has arrived back at Riverview’

Riverview Manor residents have been enjoying in-house entertainment at the Peterborough long-term care since September, and fan-favourite musicians have been playing to “many smiling faces,” says life enrichment aide Adam Wicklum.

On Sept. 7, singer Kathy Wiles was at Riverview to provide the first in-house entertainment residents have had since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020. Performer Art Lajambe played for residents on Sept. 26.

Strict safety precautions are in full effect at all performances. Entertainers perform at a safe distance from residents and there is a Plexiglas divider in front of them.

While entertainers may sing without a mask, they must wear one before and after performances. Performers must also go through screening and have a negative swab test before entering the home.

Given the success of the September shows, both Kathy and Art will continue regular performances at Riverview Manor, Adam says.

Kathy is booked for the first Tuesday of every month, while Art is performing on the fourth Tuesday of every month in the evenings.

The performers will rotate their shows for residents living on both sides of the home, Adam notes.

During her first performance, Kathy sang for the residents living on the north side of the home, with residents joyfully singing and clapping along.

Many residents personally thanked Kathy after her performance, Adam says.

“She was so excited to sing again for the residents and said she really missed seeing them,” Adam tells The OMNIway.

“She felt honoured to be the first entertainer of the home.”

Adam says Art drew a similar response from residents during his performance on the south side.

“Art also said he was so excited to be back singing and playing his guitar for the residents, as he missed them too,” Adam says.

“Residents enjoy musical entertainment so much and are very excited that it has arrived back at Riverview.”

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Riverview Manor among Peterborough LTC homes to receive additional funding to increase staffing, hours of care

Riverview Manor is one of five long-term care homes in the Peterborough-Kawartha riding to receive a portion of a $3.1-million investment from the Ontario government to boost staffing levels and increase direct care to residents for the remainder of the 2021-22 fiscal year.

Additionally, Riverview Manor will receive $2,116,320 annually more than the home currently receives in funding by 2024-25 as part of an investment package of $18,043,200 earmarked for the riding, Peterborough-Kawartha MPP Dave Smith said at an Oct. 20 announcement in Peterborough.

As a result of this funding, the province says the hours of direct care residents receive will increase from an average of two hours and 45 minutes per day to three hours for the remainder of this fiscal year.

By 2024-25, residents can expect an average of four hours of direct care per day, the province says.

Riverview Manor will receive $345,530 to enhance nursing and personal care for residents for the remainder of 2021-22. This, coupled with the funding the home will receive by 2024-25, will help enhance overall care at the home, says Riverview Manor administrator Mary Anne Greco.

Greco said Riverview Manor and OMNI Health Care are thankful to the Ontario government for this investment and that the funding will help bolster staffing levels and improve the care residents receive at the home.

“All of the funding is to be spent directly on nursing, personal care and programs, with any surplus returned to government,” she said.

Smith said the $18,043,200 long-term care homes in Peterborough-Kawartha will receive by 2024-25 “will hire thousands of new nurses, personal support workers, attendants and physiotherapists for homes across our community.

“Our seniors will see four hours of direct care every day by our hardworking health-care professionals,” he said.

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Local elementary school students make Thanksgiving gifts for Riverview residents

‘I am very proud of the students for their hard work and care they put into the project’

Riverview Manor residents were surprised to find gifts waiting for them at Thanksgiving, and what they received made the holiday extra special for them.

Grade 2 and 3 students at St. Joseph’s Catholic Elementary School in Douro created Thanksgiving artwork and letters that were sent to residents at the Peterborough long-term care home.

The artwork the children created had Thanksgiving motifs, such as cornucopias filled with harvested vegetables and, of course, turkeys. The artwork was accompanied by letters students wrote to residents.

The idea for the project came from Nick McIlwain, a personal support worker at Riverview Manor, and his wife.

Nick and his wife spoke with a teacher they know at St. Joseph’s about the project, and the teacher got on board with the idea.

The students created the artwork and wrote the letters as part of a segment of their religion program that focuses on doing charitable work and supporting social justice.

Nick has seen first hand the benefits children can bring to residents and the benefits residents can bring to children.

Up until the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, Nick’s two children would visit Riverview Manor during special holidays, bringing cards with them they would make for residents.

Nick says the residents “really enjoyed seeing our children” and the experience was also rewarding to Nick’s son and daughter, “who have been taught the importance of building relationships based on kindness and respect,” Nick says.

Residents were so pleased with their gifts at Thanksgiving that residents’ council president Peter Bascan thanked Nick for his part in getting the project off the ground.

Nick hands credit to the students for their work.

“I am very proud of the students for their hard work and care they put into the project,” he says.

“The residents were very happy to receive picture boxes and little books from the children,” he says.

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Pictures and pub nights highlight Riverview Father’s Day festivities

For Mother’s Day, The OMNIway reported how the Riverview Manor life enrichment team took photos of the ladies living at the Peterborough long-term care home to send family members and make collages for the dining rooms. For Father’s Day, the Riverview Manor dads had their turn.

A week before Father’s Day (June 20), Riverview Manor life enrichment aide (LEA) Adam Wicklum was busy taking photos of all the men living at the home. Each gentleman had two photos – a “cool” shot of them wearing sunglasses and a fedora, and regular portraits without props.

On Friday evening, some of the residents from the south-side neighbourhood helped Adam cut out the photos and put them up on a poster board for a collage.

After all the photos were taken, LEA Taylor Ioannou e-mailed them to each resident’s power of attorney as a keepsake.

Later on Friday night, photo collages went up in both the south- and north-side dining rooms.

On Father’s Day, a large front-lawn sign that said “Happy Father’s Day” was visible to residents from the dining rooms.

Life enrichment team members were busy organizing outdoor family visits for Father’s Day on Sunday, so no activities were planned.

However, on Monday and Tuesday, the dads got to enjoy special pub nights to celebrate them, with Adam working with Taylor and LEA Brigitte Byette to serve the gentlemen.

Residents enjoyed beer or pop as well as three kinds of potato chips while listening to music from the ’50s and ’60s.

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