Willows Estate resident-made spaghetti dinner in March was ‘delizioso’

Activity in early March provides ownership over meals: LEC

Before the global COVID-19 pandemic was declared March 11, residents of Willows Estate got to make a special spaghetti dinner.

Being able to chop, dice and prep their own dinner one evening in early March proved to be a rewarding experience for both the psyche and taste buds.

Residents of the Aurora long-term care prepared homemade spaghetti sauce for an evening meal. The initiative was a joint activity between the dietary and life enrichment departments at Willows Estate.

Residents’ choice, which is on the menu about three times a month, accommodates residents’ specific requests for meals.

One of the dishes of choice was spaghetti with homemade sauce.

Willows Estate took it a step further with the residents involved in the preparation of the dinner, says the home’s life enrichment co-ordinator (LEC) Teddy Mazzuca.

“At our residents’ council meetings, it always tends to (centre) around food,” Teddy says. “Food is a huge thing for our residents – it’s comfort.”

After consulting with kitchen staff the day before spaghetti was scheduled to be on the menu, life enrichment staff and residents gathered in the morning.

They chopped all the vegetables and the residents made the spaghetti sauce to serve the following day for residents’ choice, Teddy says.

“Because they made it, it was wonderful. So, we’re trying to put it back into their hands. It worked out well,” the LEC notes, adding, it’s something she’d like to do again.

“It’s pretty simple but impactful when they take ownership of it themselves.”

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