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Young at Heart Mar final

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March 2022 edition Special Advertising Supplement to the Santa Cruz Sentinel Young at Heart Young at Heart In Santa Cruz County Continued on page 2 Lifestyle Coaching Alzheimer's and Auto-Immune Therapy Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement HCG and Healthy Weight Loss Stem Cell Therapy Laser Facial Rejuvenation Botox and Fillers IV Infusions and Vitamin Shots Youthful Looks! Healthy Aging & I-You Venture: Reducing the Isolation By Tara Fatemi Walker When a person first moves to a care facility, they naturally experience challenging emotions due to this big transition. As time goes on, these emo- tions may ebb and flow, but a sense of isolation often continues. This was exacerbated during the pandemic, and the local program I-You Venture stepped in to help. I-You Venture is part of Family Service Agency of the Central Coast, which created I-You Venture in 1974 after a study showed that 58% of seniors in care facilities don't receive visitors from their "prior lives" (people they knew before entering a care facility). "The program was formed to serve the residents of skilled nursing and assisted living facilities, and to connect residents with the com- munity" says Program Director Nancy Cleve- land, who has been with Family Service Agency since 2015. "When people go into care facilities, they face many challenges including social, physical, and emotional. I-You Venture exists to reduce some of the isolation they may feel," Nancy ex- plains. "Volunteers come in and help with arts and crafts, reading to resi- dents, listening to music, playing board games, and doing one-on-one visits. This allows residents to know someone cares." Four of I-You Venture's original programs are Friendly Visitor (volun- teers visit with residents), Ageless Art (volunteers lead art groups), Picnic in the Park (annual BBQ in Aptos Village Park with live music), and Holiday Helpers (gifts are collect- ed and distributed). On March 11, 2020, every- thing changed. "Care facilities were put on quarantine and residents weren't allowed to have visitors," says Nancy. "This was very difficult, and residents became more isolated." They had to pause three programs (Friendly Visitor, Ageless Art, and Picnic in the Park) and hope to rein- state them in the future. "Although quarantine guidelines have eased up, most care facilities still have limited visitation." I-You Venture created three new programs after the pandemic started, to connect with seniors to support them and let them know they are remem- bered. These are Think- ing of You Cards, Ice Cream Day, and iPads for Seniors. Thinking of You began in 2020. "I-You Venture started collecting and distributing cards to seniors in care facilities," says Nancy. "We have av- eraged 800-1,000 cards a month, along with various activity items (crossword puzzles, word search books and adult coloring books). This past Valen- tine's Day we collected and distributed over 3,500 cards to 1,000 residents and brightened everyone's day." Amanda Bartel, Life En- richment Director at Aegis Living, is very grateful for all of the programs. "The smiles that each and every item donated has put on our residents' faces has been truly priceless," she says. "My thanks to I-You Venture for enrich- ing their lives. It warms my heart, and I am so glad we work together to bring joy to everyone in the simplest ways." Aegis utilizes Thinking of You Cards, as well as Holiday Helpers. "They provide art supplies, inspirational and uplifting cards, games, and more for each resident for the holidays," says Amanda. "The residents get really excited whenev- er I tell them we have had another donation!" The iPad Program col- lects used iPads, to allow seniors to FaceTime with friends and family. The first Ice Cream Day event was held last Septem- ber. "We distributed ice cream and cookies to 900 residents across 12 care facilities; a good time was had by all," says Nancy. Aegis was one of the par- ticipating care facilities. "The ice cream social was a part of our happy hour celebration," says Aman- da. "The residents loved being able to try new ice cream flavors while enjoy- ing live music." Lynnette Mello, former Activities Director at Westwind Memory Care, has high praise for I-You Venture. "The yearly picnics they organized at Aptos Village Park brought a lot of joy to many seniors," she says. "These picnics have provided excellent entertainment, food, and an opportunity to connect with other facilities all over the county." After the Elderday Adult Day Health Care Lift Line Senior Center Without Limits Learn more at / Obtenga más información en www.CommunityBridges.org or call/ o llame (831) 688-8840 Day services for adults with complex medical conditions Servicios de dia para adultos con condiciones médicas complejas Transportation to medical appointments Transporte a citas médicas Online classes and workshops Clases y talleres virtuales Westwind Memory Care resident receiving gift courtesy of I-You Venture

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