OMNI homes partake in community endeavours

Grade 10 student Lexi Mills puts a plant in one of the gardens at Springdale Country Manor.

Youth engagement program thrives at Springville home

From growing food for parrots to walking local trails, OMNI Health Care homes are becoming increasingly engaged in their communities.

The long-term care provider is taking part in a number of community initiatives around Ontario.

A recent Frost Manor outing supported walking trails and greenspace in the Lindsay area.

Nine residents were accompanied by several of the Lindsay long-term care home’s staff members, families and volunteers to the Auk’s Lodge courtyard at the Fleming College Frost Campus for a barbecue hosted by the Kawartha Lakes Green Trails Alliance in support of International Trails Day.

Following the barbecue, everyone from Frost Manor took a 10-minute stroll down a portion of the Kawartha Trans Canada Trail before walking back to the home.

The Frost Manor contingent was the largest group at the event, something the home’s administrator Doneath Stewart and life enrichment co-ordinator Lyndsay Burton say they were proud of.

“We thought this would be a great way to engage with our community, with other people in the area, and with having all sorts of people with all abilities, we wanted to use the trail to promote that anybody can use the trails to promote an active lifestyle within all ages,” Lyndsay recently told The OMNIway.

International Trails Day is described on the Hike Ontario website as “a day dedicated to celebrate trails, their development, uses and the healthy lifestyle they encourage.”

Meanwhile in Kanata, Garden Terrace has launched a collaboration with Parrot Partners, a nonprofit rehabilitation, training and adoption centre for parrots. Residents will grow, harvest and prepare nutritious, organic herbs and vegetables to feed the birds in the organization’s care.

As part of the collaboration, residents will have the opportunity to meet and interact with a variety of parrots every other month.

Many of the birds Carleton Place-based Parrot Partners works with come from homes where the owners could no longer keep them, so the organization works to rehabilitate them and find the parrots loving homes.

“Residents asked many questions and enjoyed learning about the training of the parrots and the planting,” says Garden Terrace life enrichment co-ordinator Sylvia Monette.

“They are looking forward to their gardens growing and having the parrots on their follow-up visit July 15.”

Meanwhile, a youth engagement program continues to flourish at Springdale Country Manor.

Five students from Thomas A. Stewart Secondary School (TAS) in Peterborough have been getting gardens and planters ready for summer at Springdale.

Not only are students in the youth engagement program getting some work experience and helping to beautify Springdale, they are also earning a high-school credit for their work.

This is the seventh year TAS students in the youth engagement program have come to the Peterborough County long-term care home to help prep the gardens.

Mark Wilkins, a child and youth counsellor, says the collaboration is providing the students with valuable work experience and a chance to make a difference to others in the community.

“One of the highlights of the program is that the students all love coming here,” Mark says. “They love interacting with the residents, and it’s a real sense of paying it forward. This is a youth engagement program where kids do something in the community to serve the community.”

The program has had a lot of success since it was initiated.

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