At Anthem Memory Care communities, it is our privilege to serve several residents of Ukrainian descent, some with family members still living in Ukraine and all of whom feel especially impacted as Ukraine continues to fight to protect its independence.
One resident of Porter Place Memory Care in Tinley Park, Illinois was especially affected by the crisis in the Ukraine. Seventy-four-year-old Gerri Szczecin’s parents were both from eastern Europe. Her father was a native Ukrainian and her mother was born in Poland.
As the crisis in Ukraine unfolded, Gerri wanted to do something to help, as did other residents and our staff as well.
So they got to work planning a project to help the Ukrainian refugees who have fled to neighboring countries. The residents’ talents were pressed into service as they worked together with staff members to create an array of beautiful, tie-dyed items including shirts, headbands, scrunchies and jewelry.
Recently, the Tinley Park Progress News covered Porter Place Memory Care’s tie-dye project. The proceeds from sales of the items will go to Direct Relief, an organization that works directly with Ukraine’s Ministry of Health as well as other aid agencies on the ground in Ukraine and neighboring countries. They are providing insulin, critical care medications, oxygen concentrators and other medical aid.
Residents and staff members of Porter Place are honored to work together to do their part in providing aid to those Ukrainian families in need. Our Anthem Memory Care communities are always seeking opportunities to reach out and give back to those who need our help. In addition to serving their broader communities, it provides them with a much-needed sense of purpose and meaning, something we all need in our lives!
“Many of our residents have seen conflicts around the world during their lifetime, and dementia doesn’t diminish their desire to help others,” Jennifer Boonstra, life engagement director for Porter Place, told the Tinley Park Progress reporter. “They are committed to helping people whether near or far.”
Our hearts and prayers continue to go out to the people of Ukraine. And we applaud the efforts of residents and staff at Porter Place.
(Our header images of Porter Place residents are courtesy of the Tinley Park Progress.)