By Jodi Triest
Energetic seniors have many opportunities to socialize, stay active and educate themselves on health and wellness through various Village programs. The Schaumburg Park District supports the Senior Center where residents enjoy gathering to bowl, play canasta or poker, take on a partner at bocce or table tennis and have lunch.
The Park District organizes various day-trips and keeps members busy with events such as the Senior Olympics or the Senior Golf League, day-trips to Cubs games, theaters, movies, seasonal festivals and more.
“Three years ago the Schaumburg Park Foundation purchased a charter bus which we call the Senior Tour Bus,” said Pat Casler, Director of Communications and Corporate Relations for the Schaumburg Park District. “The bus takes seniors on field trips in and around Schaumburg, to state fairs, to Wisconsin for the casinos, and even to Cedarburg (Wisconsin) for antiquing.”
The Adult Day Program was created four years ago through a partnering of the Village of Schaumburg and Friendship Village, a continuing care retirement community. Seniors who are unable to access the Senior Center or other facilities on their own especially benefit from this program.
The program serves older adults living with a spouse or other relative who is their caregiver. Most often, members are referred to the program by physicians, but the focus is on attracting new members and making Schaumburg residents aware that the service is available. Members of the program are not necessarily residents of Friendship Village but are residents of the community, who are typically in some stage of memory loss or other disability that may not let their caregiver feel comfortable leaving them alone.
“We provide a safe place where the member has socialization, activities, meals and services while their caregiver is at work,” said David Loop, president of Friendship Village Neighborhood Services. “It’s a wonderful program that has been very well received.”
A typical day includes meals and snacks, activities such as games and sing-a-longs, sit-down exercise, a wind-down period featuring a movie or music, arts and crafts, and a reminiscence period in which members are encouraged to share their memories of the past. Visitors and volunteers are often present to entertain members and keep them company.
Although membership presently averages 16 people a day, the program can accommodate up to 40. Low-income seniors who meet the state of Illinois requirements can have their care fully funded.
Friendship Village’s newest neighborhood, Bridgewater Place, features gardens, an atrium, an aquatic and fitness center, salon and spa, coffee lounge, bar and grill and a contemporary full-service restaurant. It has opened its doors to the residents of Schaumburg as well for use as a meeting space and to participate in activities such as the Fun and Fitness Program.
This type of stability and consistent care is vital to the well-being of all seniors and retirees, and contributes greatly to the overall quality of life for all residents, helping us find fulfillment in our “golden years.”