While the holiday season is considered by many to be a time for joy and celebration, it can be a difficult time for RCFE residents, especially if they feel isolated or distant from family and friends. As RCFE owners and managers understand the importance of providing a supportive environment year round, it’s critical that they look out for any signs that their residents may be experiencing the Holiday Blues. If you notice that some of your residents seem withdrawn, sad, or generally not their usual selves, here are some ways you can help.
Plan Opportunities for Socializing
One valuable way you can help cheer up RCFE residents affected by the Holiday Blues is by encouraging socialization among residents. By organizing holiday-themed activities such as decorating cookies, playing festive music in common areas, or simply giving out small-yet-thoughtful gifts to RCFE residents, staff can create an atmosphere of joy and togetherness even when families are far away. Additionally, these activities allow RCFE staff to observe the moods and wellbeing of the residents, so they can intervene if necessary.
Provide a Sense of Purpose
It may also prove useful to focus on giving RCFE residents a sense of purpose during this time. You can help RCFE residents feel valued by assigning them tasks such as helping with setting the table or decorating designated areas in the facility. These small tasks provide residents with added purpose and give them something to look forward to, providing a boost in their mood and overall wellbeing.
Offer Additional Support
RCFE owners and managers should also consider providing additional assistance to residents at this time of year. Simple gestures such as providing extra meals or snacks, offering in-room entertainment options like movies or games, or even sending out cards with messages of support can go a long way in bringing cheer to RCFE residents who may otherwise feel neglected during the holiday season.
Be Mindful of Differing Resident Perspectives
Finally, you should be aware that some RCFE residents may not wish to participate in festive activities. In such instances, it is important for staff to respect the wishes of these particular residents, while still maintaining an encouraging atmosphere for those who do wish to celebrate. RCFE staff should always strive to create a positive and supportive environment so residents can experience the holidays in their own way.
By providing extra care, attention, and support, RCFE owners and managers can help residents feel more connected during the holiday season. With the measures discussed above, you can help ensure that your residents are able to enjoy the holidays despite any loneliness or sadness they may be feeling. Never forget that a little kindness can truly go a long way, especially for those that may be feeling a bit low this holiday season.