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Silverado Memory Care Facility Opens BY MARY ANN BARTON

Silverado Memory Care in Alexandria opened its doors May 23 and moved in two residents the very next day. The brand-new facility, at 2807 King St., is sandwiched between Woodbine Rehabilitation and Healthcare and Ivy Hill Cemetery in Alexandria. The center is the first on the East Coast and the 37th in the nation for the Irvine, Calif.-based company. “All of our residents are living with some type of memory impairment — that could be Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Lewy Body Dementia...some with an official diagnosis and for some, it may not be an official diagnosis but they’re showing signs of memory impairment,” said Katie Hilburn, administrator. The age of those living at Silverado ranges from people in their 60s to their 90s. Typically, Silverado will hear from adult children looking to find a place for a parent, she said. They mainly want to know about staff ratio, 24-hour nursing, and security and safety measures. “Most of our residents who have come to us have either exited another community (assisted living only, without a memory component) or have had some wandering behavior,” Hilburn noted. Silverado likes to keep high-functioning residents in the early stages of memory impairment engaged with cognitive brain exercises, physical exercise and social stimulation with everything from drum circles to cooking classes. A monthly program called Silverado Cares engages residents in an activity designed to help the community at large. They kicked off the Silverado Cares program in June by laying wreaths on the graves of veterans buried at Ivy Hill Cemetery next door, Hilburn said. The residents also take morning walks at Ivy Hill. All Silverado employees are trained to interact with the residents. “It’s so important that our residents have a relationship with

everyone living in their space, this is their home,” Hilburn said. “It’s this entire sense of family across all departments.” Hilburn has been in the industry for 15 years, first as an activity assistant. She became interested in the field after her father passed away when she was in college majoring in music; she and her brother cared for their grandmother. She ended up switching career paths. “We were young and had no idea what we were doing,” she said. “Had I known then what I know now it would have been much different. It got me thinking: ‘What do people do who don’t have family?’” Those who stop in for a tour of the center receive a copy of Silverado co-founder Loren Shook’s book “New Possibilities in Memory Care: The Silverado Story.” Shook, the president, chairman and CEO of the company, came to Alexandria for the grand opening and also to meet employees during orientation. His philosophy? “Love is greater than fear.” “We’re taking care of people,” he told them, “their souls, their spirits.” Silverado has a 60-day pledge — if for any reason within the first 60 days of moving in a family decides that Silverado isn’t working out as planned, the center offers a full refund, Hilburn said. “If it’s not a good fit, you need that money to go start over somewhere else. It’s peace of mind for families looking to place a family member. If we’re not it, let’s help them find the right fit.” The center includes 66 private rooms and one room for two. The rates are all-inclusive at Silverado and are either in the Enrichment ($350 per day) or Nexus (high-functioning) category ($330 per day). Silverado offers two discounted beds that are currently filled; people can get on that waiting list through the City housing office. Silverado also wants to help support those caring for the memory-impaired at home, Hilburn said. They currently have a support group for primary caregivers sharing that experience, she said. “We want to be a resource to help people.” November / December 2018 •


Profile for Alexandria Living Magazine

Alexandria Living Magazine - Nov./Dec. 2018  

Alexandria Living Magazine - Nov./Dec. 2018