When Pam Lewis learned a few details about Older Americans Month, she was gratified that the theme of the special observance fits perfectly with the mission of Cherry Village Benevolence.
That theme is “Blaze a Trail.”
As Cherry Village administrator, Lewis said the long-term-care facility has been blazing a trail to enhance the lives of residents for many years.
“For example, we always support our residents as they make their own decisions,” Lewis said. “They are encouraged to let us know their preferences about their environment, medical services, food choices, wake/sleep time and the type of clothing they want to wear.
“That’s just the way we do things here,” she added. “For years, we have made it a point to expand services and activities whenever possible.”
The efforts at the non-profit Cherry Village, 1401 Cherry Lane, include participation in the PEAK program. The acronym stands for Promoting Excellent Alternatives in Kansas.
“This is a K-State-sponsored program that is helping Cherry Village continue its trail blazing,” Lewis commented. “PEAK provides education and resources, with a goal of enhanced care that is centered on the residents.”
During May, in observance of Older Americans Month, Cherry Village hosted several special events. They included a Mother’s Day Tea; Gentiva Hospice banana split bar; catered meal that also honored staff nurses; and homemade fruit smoothies.
Cherry Village events include residents’ family members, who are always encouraged to join any regular or special activity.
“Family interaction is a building block for better social bonds,” Lewis explained. “Socializing with loved ones and neighbors directly affects physical and mental health.”
The Administration for Community Living sponsors Older Americans Month. Its website indicates it is part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
A local family manages Cherry Village, which is a non-profit entity