Student choir’s Village Green performance meets residents’ emotional, social needs

Village Green resident June Walters is seen here chatting with students from Southview Public School’s choir on Feb. 11.

Village Green resident June Walters is seen here chatting with students from Southview Public School’s choir on Feb. 11.

‘This type of program is a great way to break the ice,’ says LEC

A recent musical program hosted at Village Green proved to be an excellent forum for bridging generational gaps and creating community connections for residents, says Karen Coulter.

Coulter, the Greater Napanee long-term care home’s life enrichment co-ordinator (LEC), says the Feb. 11 performance from Southview Public School’s choir left a lasting impression on residents.

The benefit, she adds, was twofold.

“For the residents, it was the connection with the community and also the reminiscing that came with the music,” she says. “(The program) met emotional and social needs, and children and music always help with that.”

The Retired Teachers of Ontario’s Music Builds Community grant, which provided funding for the performance, is specifically aimed at bringing musical talent to seniors-living homes in Greater Napanee and to create bonds between students and the elderly.

There were two shows: a 21-student choir and a five-member group that performed numbers on ukuleles.

Residents, Coulter says, are still talking about the day.

Coulter says what impressed her most about the event was how the students approached residents without being prompted. While everything was being set up for the performance, the children came in and began introducing themselves to residents.

“The residents were thrilled to meet them. The program benefited both the children and the seniors,” she says. “This type of program is a great way to break the ice. The songs they sang brought many happy memories for the residents, meeting their social and emotional needs.”

This type of program also fits well with OMNI Health Care’s mission, Coulter notes.

“Having the ties with community provides a sense of hope, purpose and belonging, (and this is) what OMNI believes,” she says.

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