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The Harvest Parade

Amidst all of the frightening news that most of the world is seeing right now, we bring to you – #somegoodnews – and we hope that this video will bring some joy to you as it did to us. Special thanks to our wonderful Harvest staff for organizing this drive-thru parade. Thank you to all of the families and our community for coming together in such a wonderful way to bring smiles and even tears of joy to our residents. We loved seeing each and every one of you, the sons, daughters, grand children and even great grandchildren as you shouted, waved and honked your horns  down our parking lot. Some went above and beyond with their signs which we loved! from large banners, to lever and pulley contraptions from which hung a giant heart in the back of a pickup.

For almost two months, our residents have had very limited contact with their families. Our team works hard every day to provide meaningful activities while fostering social distancing, but nothing comes close to the social interactions with families that are very dear to our residents. With that in mind our team put their heads together and began discussing the idea of a drive-thru parade.

Some of the challenges we came across were – how can we pull this off and foster social distancing, specifically with residents who have dementia? Will this benefit their social needs or will it confuse them and bring to the surface undesirable emotions or behaviors and how will we as caretakers respond?

We know that residents with dementia have short term memory loss, how will they react to this event and how will we handle different scenarios that may arise? For instance, residents with dementia may not understand why social distancing is important during this pandemic and may be inclined to walk up to their family members as they drive by. How will we interview and redirect in a scenario such as this?

What will we do if a resident with dementia becomes agitated or annoyed by their surroundings? Should their be other activities available during the event for those who may not want to participate?

After thorough consideration of each resident and their needs and ability to participate, we planed and organized the parade with them in mind. Needless to say, the outcome was a huge success! The residents loved every minute of it and we were thrilled to see our community come together in such a unique way.