Defining the Power of Love

“It is difficult to love if you only think of yourself”, Gay Stinson explained to fellow coworkers at Cedarhurst of Edwardsville during a staff meeting. “There is a power in our love. The Bible says, “Perfect love cast out all fear.” To share our love and empower ourselves and others, we are implementing a new program that all employees will be able to be involved in. It only take a little bit of your time.”

Gay has devoted over 30 years to serving seniors. She is very passionate about memory care and spends her down time visiting with our friends showing them extra attention and love. She is wonderful at finding out what the residents like to do, asking them about their lives, and offering solutions to the things that they need. Our friends at Cedarhurst find themselves asking for her when she is gone and seeking her out when they have a problem. Her love has made an impact on their lives. Now it is her turn to encourage the rest of the staff at Cedarhurst of Edwardsville to do the same.

Our community has planned and implemented a new program for our staff members. Each employee is assigned two friends (residents) within the building that they will focus on for three months. They are able to pick one friend themselves and the second friend is randomly selected for them. The staff members are then asked to spend 10 minutes a shift with each of those friends.

During their time together, staff members are asked to get to know these friends better, find out what their needs are, and perform gestures of love towards them. Gay encourages staff to start off with small gestures like reading them the paper, putting lotion on their hands, helping them with their hair or makeup, cleaning their glasses, giving them candy or a savory snack, and even just taking them on a walk. These are things that have a big impact on their lives.

Staff members at Cedarhurst of Edwardsville are excited to get started and have the opportunity to spend one on one time with their special friends. A special thanks to Gay for blessing all of our lives with this opportunity. At Cedarhurst, we work hard to continue to grow our knowledge on the best practices for memory care and in turn create and/or update programs to improve our residents’ lives.