Living Soulfully: NSNHW Preparations

Every year the American Healthcare Association comes up with fun and meaningful themes for National Skilled Nursing Care Week. This year’s theme, “ Live Soulfully” should be quite a treat. As activity professionals go, I always say we are the “soul” to the building. We know the benefits of a joyful life filled with art, culture, nature, leisure and joy. This theme is an amazing way to foster what we always plan when making our monthly calendars and going the extra mile. Each day you can focus on each element that nurtures the soul.

Here is a day to day guide for Monday through Friday to give you some inspiration.

Monday/ ART: Painting can be extremely relaxing. Host a painting party and have residents paint on a canvas while enjoying a glass of wine ( if permitted). If you are unable to hire an artist to lead the class, there are many Youtube paint classes online that you can have as your virtual instructor with the use of a smart TV.

Tuesday/ CULTURE: Celebrate the diversity of your many residents. Ask the kitchen to provide a special buffet luncheon with foods from around the world. Ask residents to volunteer share their cultural traditions, discuss their favorite foods and what they love best about their origins. It’s a fun way for them to celebrate where they came from and also for residents to get to know each other better.

Wednesday/ NATURE: If the weather is nice enjoy a day out on the patio sipping fresh squeezed lemonades or taking a nature stroll ( depending on residents’ capabilities). Getting some Vitamin D and breathing in fresh air is wonderful for the soul!

Thursday/ LEISURE: People have many different interests they like to enjoy at their own leisure. This day is the perfect opportunity to let everyone choose what activity they would like to attend by having a “Leisure Station Day”. Set up different stations in a large room. A poker table, a manicure station, relaxation station “offering shoulder massage”, a boardgame station and more! Have lots of options available!

Friday/ JOY: Nothing is more joyful than great music, amazing food and the company of wonderful friends. Plan to throw the biggest party of the year with some amazing entertainment ( if budgeting is an issue you can always use a music app like Spotify as a form of entertainment). As residents enter the social, offer them a name tag. Instead of writing their name have them tell you the one thing they are most joyful for in their life an have them wear it if they wish. It’s always wonderful to see what others are joyful for! Serve up some appetizers, drinks ( alcoholic or non, based on your facilities requirements). Have a dessert buffet with delectable choices! Joy is the most wonderful thing to celebrate and a fabulous way to end such an exciting week!

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