DHS News February 2014
Calendars Are Put to
2013 is proving to the gift that keeps on giving.
More than 500 Department of Human Service (DHS) employees
donated their 2013 wall calendars to meet a request by Gwendolyn Baugh-Conlin,
Volunteer Coordinator at Kane Glen Hazel.
Gwen said this is the third year she’s asked for calendars,
which she uses to start conversations with residents of her center. The variety
of calendar topics – from pets to occupations and hobbies – opens many avenues
for talking with residents, she said.
“I can’t wait to dig through them,” Gwen said. Residents
particularly like pet calendars to reminisce about the beloved pets they’ve had
over the years, and those with biblical or fellowship sayings prove popular as
For patients with Alzheimer’s, the calendars prove
particularly useful in prompting responses, she said.
At the Kane Scott center, Marci Donovan, Recreation
Supervisor and Volunteer Coordinator, was excited to receive the calendars. She
said staff cut out pictures and put binders together of subjects and then use
the binders for therapy.
“It’s good to keep the residents’ minds working,” Marci
said, noting that the calendars are arriving just before the Scott center opens
its new dementia unit in April. “We’re really gearing up now and training staff
on how to better communicate with residents and make it an optimum place.” The four
Kane Regional Centers provide care primarily for elderly residents but also for
people with intellectual disabilities and other conditions requiring skilled
The idea for collecting the calendars developed from Gwen’s
decorating of the bulletin board on the first floor at Glen Hazel. The
calendar’s cardstock proved perfect for use on the bulletin board and more uses
for them began to be devised.
“They’re not just calendars. It’s a great thing,” said
Marci, noting that family members and visitors use the binders during their
visits. Even the numbers are used for raffles and turn-taking. “The more alert
we can keep the residents, that’s good for them.”
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