Families & Friends- February, 2017

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Almost Tee Time! Annual Golf Tournament Approaching Save the date for St. John’s 28th Annual Golf Tournament on Monday, July 17, 2017. Join us at beautiful Midvale Country Club for a fun way to benefit the elders of St. John’s. Supporting this year’s event as a sponsor, golfer, or contributor will help improve the lives of elders across St. John’s. Help us ensure that each elder, no matter the circumstance, can truly “embrace living.”

Families Friends

A Newsletter for St. John's Skilled Services February 2017


For more information contact Anne Mc Kenna, St. John’s Foundation Executive Director at 585-7601333 for additional details.

“It makes your heart feel like you’re doing something.”

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Rochester, NY Permit #87

150 Highland Avenue Rochester, NY 14620

Helping People, Changing Lives

Families Friends

When you think of the word “volunteer,” Anne Giglia should be at the top of the list. “I’m a people person; I just love people,” says Anne. As a member of the Resident Council for St. John’s Home, Anne helps to advocate for the needs of all residents. No matter the task at hand, you will always find Anne with a smile on her face and a job to fulfill.

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Illumination of Love

Also follow us on: Editor Keaghlan Morrissey kmorrissey@stjohnsliving.org

Vice-President, Marketing Jennifer Lesinski jlesinski@stjohnsliving.org

Marketing Communications Manager Tom Harner tharner@stjohnsliving.org

President and CEO Charlie Runyon

Vice-President, Skilled Nursing Rebecca Priest

Our annual “Illumination of Love” event raised nearly $5,500 for the elders here at St. John’s Home. These funds generated through the St. John’s Foundation help provide our elders with fun activities such as summer concerts and beauty shop visits.

After suffering a stroke in the spring of 2006, Anne moved to Rochester where she found St. John’s Home. “I was not a happy camper when I first came here,” Anne recalls. It took her time to become acclimated with her new lifestyle and transition to an unfamiliar place, which is why she turned to volunteering and the desire to “make others feel at home.” Due to Anne’s jubilant personality and generous heart, it is not surprising she became the face of St. John’s Volunteer Services “Welcome Wagon” program. She welcomes new residents transitioning

Read more stories at stjohnsliving.org/shareyourstory. to St. John’s Home and delivers “Welcome Wagon” gift bags. When she is not sharing her story with new residents, you can probably find her delivering mail on the Sunflower neighborhood, where she has lived for over 10 years. Anne is a strong proponent of volunteering and believes the success of any corporation begins and ends with volunteers. “It makes your heart feel like you’re doing something,” Anne describes. Anne’s positive energy and optimistic attitude make her a role model to everyone with whom she comes in contact. She is always willing to lend a helping hand and be a voice of reason for others. Anne continues to live every day to the fullest and always finds the silver lining in any given situation. “I’ve got a lot more to do in this world,” she says. Go to stjohnsliving.org/shareyourstory/anne-giglia to read the entire feature on Anne Giglia.

Families Friends Embrace Living with Rebecca Priest What can we do to create more meaningful experiences for elders? This is a question I ask myself and challenge staff with on a regular basis. By considering what makes days meaningful, fun, and interesting, we can cultivate new ideas and concepts to improve the lives of those with whom we care for every day. At the same time, we can help to move our organization forward to an elder directed, vibrant community that is rooted in responding to individual needs. Truth be told, the questions that follow often seem to be more difficult to answer. For example, how do we make it all work with our current amount of staff, available development and training opportunities, and the money to which we have access? Can we roll something new out and still manage the enormous tasks imposed on our industry to adhere to regulations? How do we reject a structure of the old institutional model of nursing home care without devaluing the amazing compassionate souls who have found success in that system? The nuances of our size, our legislative demands, our community understanding of health care, and our educational system often makes moving forward with great ideas a daunting task. Yet, we must press on together. St. John’s has a history of making progress once we have truly committed to an idea that we know will impact elders in a positive way. Years ago it was common to hear overhead calls, alarms, and structured tray meals. These operational structures were meant mostly for staff members. These frequent interruptions and the rigidity imposed on elders throughout their day would not be acceptable in

their home, so we made the decision to eliminate these inconveniences and try something else. Through our small homes movement we have started to bridge the gap between our vision and our implementation. Small changes such as “Taco Tuesday” on the Lilac neighborhood help to create a unique and fun experience for our elders and staff alike. Providing this simple menu alteration is a great example of how small changes can make a big difference. On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day we realized that our employees who have children would need to make arrangements due to school being closed. After brainstorming ideas, we decided to invite children to come to our MLK Day of Fun event here at St. John’s Home. We had over 40 children of staff members throughout the day interacting with elders and participating in fun activities like scavenger hunts and drum circles. This event would not have been possible without having such a great staff committed to making the idea work! One of our next challenges (and it is a big one!) is reducing elders’, family, and staff overreliance on medications. The concept of becoming better medication stewards aligns with doctors’ efforts to reduce prescriptions of antipsychotics and use fewer antibiotics. In the past when an elder went through a difficult time, there was a tendency to use new medication to solve the problem. We would like to change that way of thinking by understanding what support means for each elder. I have a few ideas on decreasing the use of medications, perhaps by identifying a more holistic approach. If you have any ideas, please share them with your nurse leaders and medical staff. We’d love to hear them! Rebecca VP of Skilled Services

February Employee of the Month: Lauren Davis Congratulations to Lauren Davis from the South 5 Nursing team for her dedicated and hardworking demeanor. Lauren has been working for St. John’s Home for over three years and is known for her patient, kind, and humble work ethic. Lauren is a role model to her peers and her presence is greatly missed when she is not working.

MLK Day of Fun a Success! There were over 40 children of St. John’s staff members who participated in a day of fun honoring Martin Luther King, Jr. Volunteers, elders, and children spent the day together participating in numerous activities focused on leadership and unity. Both children and elders alike enjoyed the time spent with one another.

Longtime St. John’s Employee Returns to Head Foundation St. John’s Foundation is thrilled to welcome back Anne McKenna as its new executive director. Anne worked at St. John’s as marketing and development coordinator from 1996 to 2007. During her decade away from St. John’s she led fundraising efforts at East House and St. Joseph’s Neighborhood Center. “For me, it is like coming home,” says Anne, who will oversee all fund raising projects at St. John’s. “I have a real affection for the neighborhood and for St. John’s Home.” In addition to her professional history with the organization, she brings deep personal ties to St. John’s. She lived nearby on Highland Avenue for much of her adult life. Additionally, Anne believes her experience as a daughter of an elder at St. John’s Home (her mother lived here from 2008 until 2014) helps her bring a unique perspective to her new role. She recognizes that the transition to small homes—a project she is tasked to help generate funds for— is necessary to continue supporting elders throughout the community she has called home for many years.

Centenarian Celebration

Judy Batalion Goes Inside White Walls Judy Batalion comes to St. John’s in partnership with the JCC to share reflections about her book White Walls. This touching memoir explores the messiness of motherhood and the indelible marks that mothers and daughters make on each other’s lives.

Eleven elders were honored at our annual Centenarian Luncheon Celebration this past January. Family members and loved ones were invited to enjoy a special lunch and dessert. It was wonderul to hear their wisdom and see their smiling faces, all of which make St. John’s Home a great place to live! A special thank you to our Therapeutic Recreation team for putting together this awesome event.

Monday, March 6 at 2 p.m. Brickstone by St. John’s in the Wintergarden 1325 Elmwood Avenue

Tickets: JCC Main Desk • 585-461-2000 • rjbf.org For more information go to: stjohnsliving.org/white-walls. Bring a friend and you both receive St. John’s special rate of $8!