National Activities Professionals Week is a week dedicated to recognize the efforts that activity professionals contribute to the well-being of long term care residents. This year, the week’s focus is “Oh the Places You’ll Go,” and will be celebrated during January 20st – 26th, 2019.

Many family members and visitors are unaware of the importance and benefits of an activities department in a long term care setting. That is why we think this recognition week is an excellent opportunity for activity professionals and their supervisors to educate others by hosting an activity fair. Work with your care center staff to organize your month’s plans around a time that you can invite your community in for a tour while showcasing different activities that you offer. The activities can be planned around current events, by discussing today’s headlines, or reminiscing on stories that residents can share amongst each other. Encourage residents to talk about their travels, family history, favorite movies and books or simply pick a book and enjoy reading time. Outdoor activities such as gardening, trips to the zoo or even fishing create a sense of independence and help motor skills, as do creative activities like craft projects or cognitive ideas like setting up your own trivia game of Jeopardy or Wheel of Fortune. Here is an example of one care center’s activities brochure.

All activities are unique to the care center, based on geographic location and the desires of the patients and residents. Each activity professional spends their time evaluating and meeting the unique needs of their residents to ensure maximum benefit and participation are reached within their care center.

We believe that activities in our care centers are just as important as any other level of care for our patients and residents. Without this involvement and our family of compassionate caregivers, our care centers wouldn’t be a place to call home.

We hope that you’re able to find a way to show your appreciation for this group of people who are committed to following their purpose of sharing their passion to enhance the lives of so many of our senior population. Read more for ideas on ways to thank an activity professional.