This week I found out that we lost one of our residents suddenly in the middle of the night. I cried when I found out. No matter what the circumstances, losing a resident is really like losing a friend. Often in circumstances like this, I am reminded of the most important aspect of my job at Blakeford.
As a Life Enrichment Coordinator, my job description can be summed up in two words, planning activities. Blakeford ascribes to six dimensions of wellness – Engage, Thrive, Enlighten, Embrace, Connect, and Inspire – as part of their whole person wellness model called WellLife at Blakeford. When planning activities, I have always tried to remain mindful of each of these concepts with a focus on developing and coordinating a much deeper variety of lifestyle activities and programs that meet the needs of the whole person. However, I feel that the most vital part of my job goes far beyond great programming.
Getting to know the individuals who call Blakeford home is truly some of the most important work that I do. Even if I come up with the most innovative and creative programming in the world, that programming is only as good as the care and concern with which it is delivered.
When I come to work and make out my to-do list, I know that quite often I will not accomplish my entire list, and that this okay. What I do accomplish each day is lending an ear, being a friend, and building genuine relationships with my residents. Building these relationships, although not listed in my job description, is the most important work that I can do here at Blakeford.
Elizabeth Bradley serves as the Life Enrichment Coordinator for Independent Living. As a member of the Life Enrichment team, Elizabeth is key to a vibrant, interactive lifestyle at Blakeford. Each month, Elizabeth offers a variety of social and cultural programs, community outings, and special events that appeal to the diverse interests of the residents while encouraging energy and engagement.