Nothing works better to take our minds off our own troubles than helping someone else. Studies have shown that an act of kindness towards another person releases chemicals called “endorphins” produced by the body that help alleviate pain and boost a feeling of happiness. Research from the National Institutes of Health points to activities like volunteering and helping others as contributing to the release of endorphins or “feel-good” chemicals, as they are often called.
For individuals living with dementia, engaging in purposeful activities that help others can greatly improve quality of life and a sense of personal value. This is one of the reasons that we encourage residents of our Anthem Memory Care communities to “give back” to the broader community though projects and programs to help those in need.
Emerald Place Memory Care in Glenview Illinois, from now through December, will be packaging and delivering care packages to serve those seniors who are in isolated living conditions. It’s part of their Seniors Serving Seniors program. And it’s needed now more than ever.
Each care kit includes a variety of items, including mittens, cards and letters, coffee mugs and water bottles. Emerald Place is currently accepting local donations to a special drop box located at the community entrance.
The program caught the attention of the Daily Herald, who sent a writer to interview Kim Reichert, community relations director for Emerald Place. “Many of our residents are lifelong volunteers committed to making their community a better place to live,” Kim told the Herald. “They continue to want to help others and that’s the focus of the Seniors Serving Seniors program,” she added.
When was the last time you volunteered to help someone in need? This upcoming holiday season will be especially challenging for many seniors who are living alone and feeling isolated. What better time than now to reach out and get involved in your own community. Check your local organizations and senior care providers and find a way to help. You’ll be doing a great service and feeling great in the process!
The image above shows Marion Siegel, a resident of Emerald Place Memory Care, putting the finishing touches on a care basket.