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Ursuline residence transitions to care home

By Sandra Kary

05/02/2018

SASKATOON — St. Angela Merici Residence in Saskatoon has now been licensed as a personal care home. Home to the Ursulines of Prelate since 1986, the residence has now opened its doors to the public to enjoy the care and community that they have offered their own sisters for years.

“We have completed the modifications and renovations to our residence, not only meeting, but exceeding the requirements set out by the Ministry of Health,” says Theresa Winterhalt who, with Shannon Granger, serves as co-executive director of the facility. “The residence retains its Catholic identity, offering daily mass, holy hour and the rosary. However, people of all faiths (or no faith) are welcome.”

Many of the current residents are Ursuline Sisters, Winterhalt notes, “but we have welcomed our first new resident, and have room for more who this level of personal care, men or women.”

Adding to a strong staff care team is a new activities director. Exercise programs, crafts, and seasonal activities such as gardening enhance the hospitable home that the residence has been for years. Home-cooked meals draw the community together, as well as the chapel and atrium spaces. Students from Bishop Mahoney School are engaged as volunteers and companions to the residents.

A particular benefit of the Merici Residence is its staffing structure. A full-time kitchen, laundry and housekeeping staff allows aides to be more focused and interactive with the residents.

“We have a really dedicated staff,” says Winterhalt. “It’s more than just a job for them; they truly care for our residents.”

The care staff are also trained in the Gentle Persuasion Approach (GPA), which involves a higher level of education and skilled care than would be found in most personal care homes. Added to the staff complement is the services of a Registered Nurse for 24 hours a week, along with a physician who regularly comes on site to tend to the needs of residents.

The transition from private residence to licensed private care home has had its share of practical and bureaucratic challenges, but the end result is a warm home available to those who need that next step up in care. It is evident to all who enter the residence that the spirit of the Ursulines still prevails in this place.

For more information, contact Theresa or Shannon at 306-242-5566, ext. 5, or email stangmerici@sasktel.net.

 

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