Streamway Villa residents celebrate Chocolate Ice Cream Day

‘We ate chocolate everything’

Would you like a cone or bowl?

That was the big question Streamway Villa residents were faced with on June 7, which happened to be Chocolate Ice Cream Day.

The Cobourg, Ont. long-term care home’s residents were treated to generous helpings of the world’s second-most popular ice-cream flavour (after vanilla) to celebrate the occasion.

“We ate chocolate everything,” Streamway Villa life enrichment co-ordinator Laurie Kracht says.

According to the UK website for Carpigiani, an Italian company that manufactures ice cream and gelato machines, the history of chocolate ice cream dates back to 1692, when the first known recipe was recorded.

The Carpigiani website states that from its earliest days, ice cream was fashioned from popular drinks of the time, including coffee, tea and, of course, hot chocolate.

That’s not to say that the chocolate ice cream we enjoy today tastes the same as it did in the late 17th century.

“The first chocolate (ice cream) recipe, published in Naples, was quite different to the chocolate ice cream that we know and love today,” the website says. “It was based on a popular drinking chocolate that was regularly mixed with spices such as cinnamon and anise.”

The origins of Chocolate Ice Cream Day are foggy – The OMNIway could not find any sources detailing when the first Chocolate Ice Cream Day was held – but the important thing is Streamway Villa residents got to celebrate the day and even learn new things about the popular dessert.

“We talked about the fun facts of chocolate and ice cream,” Laurie says, adding, “did you know it takes 50 licks to get through one ice-cream cone?”

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Province approves development of 192-bed Streamway Villa Long-Term Care Home

The project, which will upgrade the current 59 beds Streamway Villa offers and add 133 new beds in Cobourg, is expected to begin next spring

COBOURG, Ont. – Streamway Villa residents and staff members are looking forward to living and working in a new, spacious 192-bed long-term care home with modern conveniences that will be built in Cobourg to replace the present home within the next three and a half years.

Representatives from OMNI Health Care, the Ontario government, Northumberland County and the Town of Cobourg held a press conference in the Streamway Villa courtyard March 22 to make the blockbuster announcement.

The project, which will likely begin next spring, will upgrade the current 59 long-term care beds Streamway Villa offers and add 133 new beds in Cobourg.

Construction is expected to take up to 36 months to complete, including the design and approval stages.

“We have a proud history of providing great care to this community, and we’re happy to see the Ontario government recognize the need for more long-term care beds right here in Cobourg,” said Patrick McCarthy, OMNI’s president and CEO.

Once completed, the new Streamway Villa will be a Class A long-term care home with modern amenities, such as wider hallways and more home-like dining areas, and privacy will be enhanced by limiting all rooms to no more than two beds.

The new home will be divided into six neighbourhoods, with 32 beds in each home area, to provide residents with a quieter, more enjoyable living experience.

Streamway Villa administrator Kylie Szczebonski said the new, state-of-the-art home with all its amenities will help enhance quality of life for residents and enable staff members to provide an even higher level of care.

“The new modern facility will have a significant impact and a positive impact on our residents, families and staff,” she said.

“The new home will allow us to provide the highest standard of care that we are known for in the community while also allowing us to easily incorporate new technologies and innovations into our practices.

“We cannot wait to have this new home, and we cannot wait to be one of the top (long-term care homes) in this province.”

Northumberland-Peterborough South MPP David Piccini underscored the impact the new home will have on the local community.

“Our loved ones in long-term care deserve a comfortable, modern place to live that is near family and friends and has the built-in supports they need when and where they need it,” Piccini said.

“The number of people in Cobourg who will need long-term care is expected to rise over the next decade. These new and upgraded spaces, built to modern design standards, will help ensure residents have access to the care they need in a safe and secure environment.”

With a growing aging population and a greater need for long-term care beds in the region, Northumberland County Warden Bob Crate said the project will help shorten wait times for people in the county seeking long-term care.

“An expanded 192-bed home will increase access to long-term care and address some of the associated pressures in our local health-care system,” he said.

Cobourg Mayor John Henderson also welcomed the announcement as a “historic long-term care investment” in the community.   

“We are proud and supportive of our aging demographic and recognize that this is a huge step in the right direction towards continuing to serve our senior population.”

The province has now approved redevelopment projects for seven OMNI long-term care homes since 2018.

In addition to today’s announcement for Streamway Villa, approval has been given for a new 192-bed Riverview Manor in Peterborough, a new 128-bed Village Green in Greater Napanee, and a redeveloped and expanded 128-bed Country Terrace in Komoka, Ont., all of which are currently in the design phase.

Construction is well underway on the renovation and expansion of Almonte Country Haven, Pleasant Meadow Manor and Woodland Villa.

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Streamway Villa marks 1,000th COVID-19 test with celebration

Streamway Villa officially conducted 1,000 COVID-19 tests at the Cobourg, Ont. long-term care home on Feb. 16.

Nurse Jessica Bell has been performing nasal pharyngeal PCR COVID-19 swabs since testing began last spring after the World Health Organization declared the pandemic.

“A couple of other nurses have done (the tests) when Jessica was off, but if you speak to any of the staff, it’s Jessica who has been our star swabber,” Streamway Villa life enrichment co-ordinator Laurie Kracht tells The OMNIway.

Performing these tests on residents and team members is crucial to detecting COVID-19 infection and preventing the spread of the virus.

Due to Jessica’s hard work, Streamway Villa administrator Kylie Szczebonski decided to mark the 1,000 swab with a celebration.

There was cake for everyone to enjoy, confetti was thrown and there was a large “1,000” made up of balloons attached to the ceiling in the home to mark the occasion.

Laurie says Jessica makes the swabbing process easy for everyone.

Jessica and nurse manager Jennifer Suave have set up a TV showing a clip of a fireplace burning, and there is calming music in the background as well, Laurie says.

“She’s gentle and makes the experience special for us,” Laurie says. “Jessica even gives us treats after every swab.”

Laurie adds that Jessica will be starting new rapid COVID-19 tests at Streamway Villa next week.

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