Throughout this week, we’re spotlighting some of the exceptional Activity Professionals that we have the honor of working with and share some stories from the field that make these people so special. Stay tuned so you can get to know some of the individuals making an incredible impact on older adults living across North America!
Dawn has always worked with the senior population- she’s been in the field for nearly 24 years. As a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist with a master’s degree in Gerontology, she not only has expert knowledge but a great passion for serving older adults, as well. She feels especially called to work with older adults that have cognitive impairments like Alzheimer's.
As an AgeWell Solvere community, The Mansions at Gwinnett Park upholds a unique value system, which includes the Salus philosophy. Salus is focused on bringing together all the dimensions of a resident’s health (physical, social, intellectual, and spiritual) while recognizing their autonomy and potential rather than focusing on any perceived deficits or challenges. As a Salus Coach Programming Director, Dawn exemplifies these values. She speaks eloquently:
“Finding ways to help [residents] live their best, most fulfilling life day in and day out can have its challenges, but it is beyond rewarding. Facilitating daily therapeutic programs such as trivia, music, exercise, socials, and reminiscence allow us to help those I work with thrive and be successful.”
Dawn uses Rendever as a tool in this mission:
“[Rendever] has allowed our residents to experience moments of recall based on “visiting” locations around the world, including their old neighborhoods, or watching their favorite performer. They especially enjoy being submersed in a physical experience such as skydiving or climbing Mount Everest. At times I will witness them reaching out for an animal in front of them and they often find it fascinating and comment, “It felt like I was there.”
Beyond her obvious grit and determination in changing the lives of her residents, Dawn brings them the simple things as well: joy, compassion, and caring. If you were to see a video with Dawn and her residents, the love they have for one another is obvious. It is clear that the relationships she and her residents share are genuine and joyful. Thank you for sharing these moments with the Rendever Family! We are so lucky to have you as part of our community.
As Dawn says: “Being able to serve and bring joy to the residents at the Mansions at Gwinnett Park Assisted Living and Memory Care is why I continue to do what I do, as I celebrate my 24th year of Activity Professionals Week.”