Suze Diaz — There definitely is no age limit when it comes to having dreams, as aging does not erase hopes and dreams. When the community comes together to share the joy in making a dream come true, magic happens for there is power in numbers. Recently, three community organizations partnered together to give loving care to a local senior caregiver.
According to a report from AARP Public Policy Institute and the National Alliance for Caregiving, the majority of caregivers (approximately 60%) are women who care for one other adult in their family: a spouse, a parent or another relative. Out of this percentage, about 55% are most often caring for a male spouse. The role of caregiver can be daunting at times and opportunities for self-care are greatly needed to give balance. The ways in which we can help support them are many.
Vista Village Senior Living is an award-winning assisted living and memory care community in Vista. With specially designed accommodations offered to make each resident feel at home, their industry-leading activities program is committed to empower their residents to live a happy and full quality life. One of their innovative programs, Vibrant Life, promotes life filled with joyful experiences, meaningful endeavors and abundant opportunities through “Livin’ the Dream”, an element of the program that is designed to make residents’ wishes come true. Vibrant Life Director Ashley Cole is heartfelt and deeply committed in her quest to fulfill her residents’ desires.
Sarah Caccioppoli is a delightfully sweet, practical, gentle, loving lady and is one of Vista Village Senior Living’s newer residents. Her husband is a resident of Vista Village’s Memory Care. Hailing from the beautiful coal mountains of Virginia, Sarah met her husband through work when she moved to New Jersey. They lived for a while in New Jersey enjoying the seasons, then Manhattan, where they met a variety of people and culture, to Washington D.C. where they both shared the love of museums with their triplet grandsons. Thoroughly enjoying the adventures of their journey on the East Coast, they found themselves traveling to the West Coast landing in Encinitas, California. When her husband was first diagnosed with dementia, Sarah would drive from the coast twice daily to see her husband as she worked and cared for her family. After a long while, she moved into Vista Village to be closer to him. She feels that both she and her husband are in good secure hands, safe and comfortable with how Vista Village takes care of their residents. She enjoys participating and learning from many of the activities offered while being able to be there for her husband more closely.
Second Wind Dreams is a non-profit organization dedicated to changing the perception of aging through the fulfillment of dreams and has become involved in more than 1,000 eldercare communities. Random acts of kindness in the form of financial support comes from individual contributions, corporations, and memberships to continue its mission to focus on enhancing the quality of life for seniors and changing society’s perception of aging by making senior dreams come true. A kind collaboration with Vista Village Senior Living made quite an impact to make Sarah’s dream come true.
Sarah’s wish was to have a relaxing spa day experience. The Bellus Academy team in Poway was more than thrilled to join Vista Village Senior Living and Second Wind Dreams grant a day of pampering. Bellus Academy is one of the top-rated, award-winning beauty and wellness institutions dedicated to graduating career-ready professionals. With three California locations and one Kansas location, Bellus Academy partners with the highest caliber of experts, product lines and equipment manufacturers and participates in more than 80 community service events annually, placing a strong focus in giving back to the community and allowing their students to experience what they learn in class to help them connect with their future clients.
Sarah’s spa day included her very first massage and facial complete with a comfy personalized monogrammed plush robe. Going with the flow of her spa experience, she felt she was in great hands with massage therapy student Larry and esthetics student Jewel. Sarah welcomed the warm and caring attentiveness she received from everyone at Bellus Academy and felt like a million bucks from head to toe after her sessions. Being able to be treated with as much care and love as she herself has given to others, Sarah appreciates that self-care is an important part of being an effective caregiver.
It is through the kindness and compassionate collaboration of people committed to enriching others that makes the world a joyful place. Now more than ever, our seniors’ dreams are becoming realities proving that you are never too old to enjoy one’s heart’s desires. Focusing on enhancing the quality of life for our elders is a powerful way to connect within our community. Vista Village Senior Living, Second Wind Dreams and Bellus Academy gives an excellent example to this approach of caring.
For more information on Vista Village Senior Living and their Vibrant Life program, please visit their website http://vistavillageseniorliving.com/
For information on how you can be a part of Second Wind Dreams, please visit https://www.secondwind.org/dreams.html
For descriptive details on spa services and beauty and wellness education programs offered at any of the Bellus Academy locations, please visit their website http://www.bellusacademy.edu/about-bellus/locations/
Photo credit Bellus Academy Poway