Life in long-term care can be lonely, and feelings of isolation can be overwhelming. Especially in this time of COVID-19, when families are unable to visit their loved ones, whether they are in retirement living or sheltering in place due to safety measures. Remind your loved one that, though you are apart, they are always in your heart.
We have a few gift ideas for people in care:1. Write a letter or a postcard
In today’s digital age, there are endless ways to connect to those far away: phone calls, emails, text messages, video calls. But for someone in care, these options may not be readily accessible.
One meaningful option that is a delight to receive but too often forgotten is a handwritten letter or card. Taking the time to write a note to your loved one shows how much you are thinking about them. The perfect card will make their day, and is something they can hold onto forever and display in their room. You can even enclose something small in the envelope, like a cute Polaroid or a pressed flower or leaf.2. Send care packages
Send your loved ones a care package of tiny treasures to bring a smile to their face. Wondering what to include in your care package? What you send should be suitable for your loved one's circumstances, but here are some ideas:
- A small scrapbook of a place they loved to visit, filled with photos printed from a travel website or cut from a travel brochure
- Homemade crafts, especially anything created with materials that are pleasant to touch
- A mildly scented sachet for a drawer or a pillow, or a handkerchief with a drop of fragrance
- A favourite snack (though be sure to check with the residence for guidelines)
- A hand-drawn picture from a grandchild or the budding family artist
- Mementoes to celebrate a special day, like a valentine, or a small flag for a national holiday
These special packages can help start conversations with care partners, giving residents a chance to chat about the significance of the items and the stories attached.3. Give the gift of reminisart™
A reminisart™ custom collage composed of family photos will help loved ones feel closer to their families who can’t be there in the day to day.
A reminisart™ is printed on large-format vinyl up to 5’ wide, and can be put up anywhere in a room. It’s designed so that your loved one’s familiar favourite memories are always close by. It provides comfort, grounding, and eases feelings of isolation, even after the video chat has ended or the phone has been hung up.
At a glance, other residents, care teams, and visitors can see your loved one’s significant moments and learn more about their unique and wonderful life journeys, leading to happier, more meaningful conversations. Your aunt, dad, or grandma will feel acknowledged as a person with a story, someone worth getting to know.
We’re in a difficult time right now, and without the benefit of visits, face-to-face conversation, and physical touch, it can be challenging to show your loved one know much you’re thinking of your loved one.
With a handwritten card on their side table, a special token in their pocket, and a reminisart™ on their wall, they’ll know.