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Serving the Loup Valley for 140 Years

Grandview Celebrates

Assisted Living Week

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Pictured (kneeling, front left): Grandview Administrator Megan Gotschall, (kneeling, front right): Executive Director Lisa Nielsen. Other staff members pictured above include: Hannah Urbanovsky, Jennifer Price, Brooke Miller, Helen Ohme, Richard Wadas, Tiffon Brewer, Ashton Wadas, Lulu Meyer, Bethany Hocking, Jessica Bukish, Payton Urbanovsky, Gigi Hughes, Carly O'Connor, Danielle Sich, Amber Twyman, Tina Genereux, Marcia Reznicek and Marisol Spencer. (Not pictured) Gloria Knight, Elizabeth Lambdim, Jody Lawrence, Jody Lane, Annie Marlow, Jeanette Delzer and Sue Vlach. Inset: high school students who work part-time include (l-r): Avery Ladwig, Kirsten Ladwig, Jamie Vavra and Alyssa Lawrence.

By Kate Wolf

   It requires very special people to care for those who are residents of assisted living and residential care facilities. The kindness, compassion, observational talents and healthcare skills they must possess are far too often ignored or taken for granted. The administrators, staff, and volunteers at assisted living facilities become like extended family members to the residents and the relationships they form are just as important.

     Approximately 818,000 individuals, half of whom are 85 years or older, reside in the 30,800 assisted living or residential care communities across America today.  More than 478,500 highly skilled individuals work in the industry.

   “Grandview operates like a fine machine,” stated Lisa Nielsen, Executive Director of Grandview and other facilities located elsewhere.  “Each staff member has a special role and special duties to perform.  They do it so well, it’s not even apparent how much work actually goes into it.  We’ve never had to hire agency staff and we feel that contributes to the quality of life for every resident.”

   Indeed, it is almost unheard of in the healthcare industry and speaks volumes for the level of professionalism, loyalty, and sense of teamwork the Grandview staff demonstrates every day.

   Megan Gotschall, Administrator at Grandview Assisted Living, is not the kind of individual to merely sit behind a desk and shuffle papers.  She is out there working right alongside her staff, helping wherever and whenever she is needed.  Knowing she works as hard as they do, the staff feels understood, respected, and important members of the team. In her work ethic and administrative skills, Gotschall demonstrates daily the critical difference between a “boss” and a leader.

   National Assisted Living Week, Sept. 10-16, was founded to celebrate facilities just like Grandview, as well as their administration, dedicated staff, and compassionate volunteers.  Established in 1995, it provides a unique opportunity for residents, their loved ones, staff, volunteers, and local communities to recognize the role of assisted living in caring for America’s seniors and individuals with disabilities. The annual observance encourages facilities around the country to offer a variety of events and activities to celebrate the individuals they serve, as well as educating members of the public about this important aspect of long term care.  The theme of this year’s celebration was “A Season of Reflection.”

   In honor of National Assisted Living Week, Grandview recognized its staff with small gifts of appreciation such as caramel corn, Kit Kat candy bars, their choice of beverages at Something’s Brewing Café, t-shirts and more.

   A host of enjoyable activities were planned for the residents during the week including: brownie sundaes, a piano concert by Linda Senn of Burwell, vocal music by Mike McCracken of Nashville, TN, a day to reminisce about the “good old days” and enjoy a program about vintage clothing and handmade dresses by Diane Hughes, Sue Vlach and Tricia (Vlach) Kasper.  In addition, they enjoyed a performance by the Ord Gymnastics and an award banquet where each resident’s special traits were honored. A taffy pulling event was also held, as well as an exciting visit by former Cornhusker quarterback, Jeff Quinn. Last, but certainly not least, a big pizza party was held for both staff and residents with a “Drive-In Movie Night” featuring two movies in two separate rooms, which gave them a choice of entertainment (and nobody had to stow away in the trunk of a car!). Concession stand treats were also provided.

   Congratulations to Grandview Assisted Living, its administration, staff, and volunteers, as well as its fun-loving community of residents for celebrating National Assisted Living Week in such a meaningful and memorable way!

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