Meet The Courtyard at Oshkosh’s Life Enrichment Director, Colleen Saunders, who creates and executes programming aimed at keeping residents happy and healthy but, even more significantly, that gives meaning and purpose to their days.
“Working with older adults to provide meaningful engagement brings me great joy!” says Colleen. “I like connecting one-on-one with residents to listen to their stories and to get to know them each on a more personal level.”
With Courtyard being a new community, Colleen is thrilled to be able to meet the residents as they move in and create programming from scratch that is tailored to residents’ specific interests and abilities.
“My person-centered and resident-driven philosophy makes showcasing individuals’ knowledge and talents a priority,” she says.
Residents can choose to participate in a variety of programs for physical, mental, emotional and spiritual engagement that include walking club, book club, baking and cooking, mindful movement, card and game groups, daily discussions, Friday happy hours and Sunday sermons. What’s more, residents can pursue their individual passions and use their talents by starting a new club, group or activity with Colleen’s support.
A mother of eight who was a foster care provider and ran a home day care for 26 years, Colleen is experienced at supporting others. She says that after years of helping young people find their purpose, helping older adults live with purpose is second nature.