Yee Hong Newsletter

Mississauga Activation team wins Program of the Year!

Congratulations to our Mississauga Centre’s Activation Team! Our Labyrinth Garden Walk was awarded Outstanding Program of the Year by Recreation Professionals of Ontario (RPO) at their 2022 Annual Convention.

RPO is a professional organization representing leisure recreation providers in healthcare settings. The Outstanding Program of the Year award recognizes an excellent recreation program, as decided upon by a committee of previous winners.

Situated on the second-floor balcony, the Labyrinth Garden Walk is a fan favourite among our Mississauga Centre residents. But how did this beautiful garden come to be?

Last summer, our Activation Manager, Teresa Chew and her team were brainstorming new ways to promote and support resident wellness. One of the objectives was to incorporate the “fresh air strategy” and bring residents outdoors, especially during the warmer months.

That’s when the team decided to transform the unused balcony patio into a labyrinth garden.

Teresa first learned about labyrinth gardens in a workshop she attended years ago. These tranquil gardens are a place for personal reflection, relaxation and renewal. The gentle, winding paths invite us to slow down and enjoy a quiet moment with nature.

In long-term care settings, gardens can also enhance social interaction and activity, promote exercise and physical health, and provide multi-sensory stimulation and engage the brain.

With the help from a team of creative and hardworking summer students, the once empty patio was transformed into a beautiful garden for residents to enjoy.

Complete with comfortable benches, colourful flowers, delicate windchimes, and positive messages of love and joy, the Labyrinth Garden is a beautiful place where our residents can connect with others or spend a moment of self-reflection.

Thank you and congratulations to our Mississauga Activation Team and students for the incredible work and great accomplishment!

What’s happening at Yee Hong Foundation this fall?

 We’ve Launched Our First Staff Raffle

Hosted by the Yee Hong Foundation, the raffle is a great way to contribute to the Love Gives Capital Campaign with the goal of doubling Yee Hong’s bed capacity and to have the chance of winning amazing prizes!

Many thanks to all the staff who has supported the raffle! We’ve sold over 400 tickets so far!

Although the raffle is only available for staff, families can still contribute to helping seniors living at Yee Hong at www.yeehong.com/donate.

 

Yee Hong A1 Radiothon on Nov 10

Each November, dozens of residents, families and community members share their real-life stories during an 11-hour broadcast on Sing Tao A1 Chinese Radio (AM 1540), giving listeners a glimpse into how their everyday lives have been touched by the expectational care provided by Yee Hong.

On November 10th, A1 Radio will be back, harnessing the power of radio while inspiring new and returning donors to invest in Yee Hong’s development of building three new homes.

If you want to share an inspiring story to say your words of appreciation and encouragement to Yee Hong, please contact us at foundation@yeehong.com. 

Silver Ball in Support of the “I Can Dance” Program

The annual Yee Hong Silver Ball is back for 2022! You’re all invited to attend this year’s Silver Ball Gala in support of the “I Can Dance” program for those with Parkinson’s and other seniors’ services.

Since 2017, Yee Hong has partnered with Dance DNA to develop the “I Can Dance” fitness program for those with Parkinson’s disease. The project has helped patients gain movement and balance. It has also provided a safe, supportive, and inclusive social network, helping build self-esteem for participants.

Come out to see the benefits of dancing at the Silver Ball on November 12th to 13th at the St. Peter and Paul’s Banquet Hall in Scarborough!

For more information, visit www.danceforsilverball.ca.

Meet Tam Por Por!

Yee Hong is home to incredible seniors with rich life experiences. Our conversations with our residents always leave us feeling refreshed and inspired.

This month, we’re shining a spotlight on Tam Por Por, a McNicoll Centre resident who began her decades-long journey with Yee Hong as a volunteer. Tam Por Por, thank you for sharing your story with us!

a smiling senior stands in front of a multi-coloured wall decorated with hearts

Hello, I am Ms. Tam, Wai Ling. Many here call me Tam Por Por. I have been living at Yee Hong Centre Scarborough McNicoll for 7 years.

My journey with Yee Hong started few decades ago: I was a volunteer. I helped mainly with delivering meals on wheels in the community, and a cooking class in a senior building call Villa Elegance for 20 years. I continued the cooking class up until 2019, even when I was living in LTC. I did not want to give up my passion for cooking. As my health deteriorated, and after a hip surgery, I only contributed in the smaller tasks of folding envelopes and training staff to cut vegetables in the kitchen. In 2018, I also took up the role of a Resident Council Member for 2 terms. I enjoyed representing the residents living in the unit. I helped speak up for them by raising concerns and giving feedback regarding our care, services, and most importantly, food.

I love food, as you can tell. I enjoy the simplest of oatmeal, congee, eggs and buns in the morning. My opinion on the lunch and dinner is a different story. It is about presentation, like how the vegetables are cut will affect the texture of the celery or fury melons. Food is associated with our memories and where we come from. It is very hard to cook, as the Chinese continent is filled with different dialects and cooking styles. But I will contribute what I can to help improve the residents’ experience. I am glad to have opportunity to share my knowledge on cooking here.

I am here without any family, speaking mainly of my 5 children. I worked so hard to raise them and now they can enjoy the lives they want. I am happy for them. I am glad we are able to connect regularly, often on the screen and a few times in person in the past few years. Now, my family is the staff and other residents here. It is good to see staff of the same ethnic and culture. To be cared for by someone you are comfortable to share your joy and pain with is a blessing. I appreciate my life here with activities like origami, crafts, karaoke, gardening, taking strolls in the area and programs about Chinese history. Origami and crafts are always creative and new. Karaoke and Chinese history are for reminiscing and familiarity. Gardening and strolls help me move and allow nature take its course.

I hope my journey brings light and positivity to living in a culture specific long-term care home. Thank you for reading my sharing of experiences!

Sincerely,

image of Tam's signature

Tam, Wai Ling a.k.a. Tam Por Por

Celebrating Mid-Autumn Festival

On the fifteenth day of the eighth month in the Lunar Calendar, many East and Southeast Asian cultures celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival. Throughout the second week of September, residents and staff at our homes welcomed the bright, round moon with fun festivities. At McNicoll Centre, residents enjoyed sweet moon cakes and warm tea as our talented volunteer, Peter sang traditional songs.

3 Ways to Improve Appetite in Seniors

Image shows a smiling woman with short, dark hair. Text on image reads Nancy Cheng Registered Dietitian, Nutrition for Seniors

Nancy Cheng, Registered Dietitian, shares a few ways caregivers can better manage nutrition for senior family members who have loss of appetite.

It’s not uncommon for seniors to experience a decline in appetite. If older adults are eating less, the first step would be checking with a medical professional to rule out any health conditions that might be causing it.

Residents of Yee Hong Centres have the benefit of trained staff who monitor their body weights routinely and ensure adequate nutrition is offered. Yee Hong also provides a social environment, consistent meal and snack times, and a variety of menu options offered every day. Some people aging at home won’t have the same advantages. We’re pleased to share what we’ve learned about safe and healthy eating during our golden years.

To help caregivers provide better care for their loved ones living at home, we spoke to Registered Dietitian, Nancy Cheng, about how to improve nutrition for the elderly.

1. Get creative
Not eating enough can lead to insufficient nutrient levels or even serious health complications for older adults. Implementing a colourful “rainbow diet” can make eating more enjoyable to seniors while increasing their nutrient intake.

This method involves choosing at least three colors from the rainbow including: green, e.g. choi sum or broccoli; red, e.g. tomatoes or strawberries; orange, e.g. carrots or oranges. Incorporate more fruits and vegetables of other rainbow colors into your meal-planning for the day.

“Food that is colourful and visually-appealing can stimulate appetite and each color in the rainbow has its own set of unique phyto-nutrients,” Nancy says.

2. Try something new
Changing things up every now and then with healthy food alternatives is a great way to add some excitement to meal time. For example, you can try oat milk instead of dairy milk, or even brown rice and quinoa instead of white rice.

Ultimately, a well-balanced diet for seniors should include an adequate amount of protein, fibre, calcium, iron and other nutrients. “Protein is essential to maintaining muscle mass, which is especially important for seniors because the loss of muscle mass can lead to issues with mobility,” Nancy says.

Additionally, dairy and soy milk are excellent sources of calcium, which helps maintain bone density—essential for people with osteoporosis.

3. Be supportive and think about safety
Nancy also recommends supportive words and encouragement. A simple method is to talk about the key health benefits of eating a well-balanced diet during meal times.

If a loved one has trouble chewing or swallowing food, it may be necessary to develop a texture-modified diet. This involves incorporating more soft foods into meal-planning. Ask a dietitian or primary care provider how to make changes safely.

Sundae Fun Day!

In August, our Finch Centre team threw an ice cream party to celebrate the summer and thank our hardworking staff for their resilience, dedication and team spirit.

Outside, an ice cream truck whipped up soft serves and slushies for staff. Inside, enthusiastic summer students operated an ice cream station and Activation colleagues delivered cool treats to long-term care residents, floor by floor.

We had seven different flavours to choose from, including Mango Tango, Cotton Candy, Golden Ribbon and Wild Sherbet. Residents came back for second, third and even fourth servings! Thanks Finch team for keeping us safe and cool this summer.

Summer Fun Party

Mississauga Centre residents had a great time at the Summer Party on July 27 and 28. Our annual outdoor festival featured treats, Roll-a-ball, wheel of fortune, Velcro dart board, the photo booth, a prize table and performances by talented musicians from our community.

Everyone who participated won a prize, and we saw smiles everywhere we looked. Thank you to staff, family members and volunteers who made our wonderful event so memorable. We all had so much fun!

An Honourable Visit

In June, we received a visit from Manitoba’s former Lieutenant Governor Philip S. Lee. Mr. Lee has a distinguished record of leadership and volunteerism within Winnipeg’s Chinese-Canadian community, serving as an advocate for the concerns of Manitobans of Chinese heritage.

We were honoured to welcome Mr. Lee to our hospice residence and showcase Yee Hong’s offering of culturally-appropriate services for Chinese and other ethnic seniors in our community. We look forward to collaborating with healthcare organizations in Manitoba!