You're Browsing Community

Diane tends garden on her deck overlooking Fish Creek Park

Diane tends garden on her deck overlooking Fish Creek Park

When Diane Osberg moved into United’s Fish Creek West a month ago, she wanted to wake up on the morning of her birthday and look out over the expanse of green grass and trees that opens up onto Fish Creek Park. She lived in another older adult community, but fell in love with her new suite on the fourth floor of Fish Creek West with north and east-facing windows. “On the advice of my children to enjoy the summer on her new deck, I decided there was no point in waiting.  What sold me? The programming sold me, the building sold me, the flexible meal schedule sold me,” said Diane. “And when I moved here, my friends wanted to see what I was so excited about.”

Diane invited her friends, many of whom already live in older adult communities, to her suite and let them know why she decided to move. “So instead of showing them the suite and the amenities one or two at a time, I decided to hold a large house warming, or open house. Forty of my closest friends came out, and United was very gracious to help out with catering and facilitating tours to show them around. It was an amazing afternoon!”

Diane invited 40 friends to her suite at United's Fish Creek West

Diane invited 40 friends to her suite at United’s Fish Creek West

“We helped out with the food, beverages and wine as a way to contribute to Diane’s house warming,” said Daphne Reid, an active living advisor at Fish Creek. “We also decided to give everyone who attended a small gift package on her behalf that included a gift certificate for dinner any time they want to come back.”

Diane already has a friend who is talking with Daphne about moving in, and others have expressed interest.

Diane and her husband Robert had lived on an acreage and lived into their “forever” retirement home in Black Diamond, and she served on the Black Diamond town council. When Rob passed away suddenly, Diane moved to an older adult community. But after a couple of years, she wanted more. “I’m a social person, and I wanted a variety of programs. When I toured here during an open house in the spring, I was blown away.”

As a former head of continuing education at SAIT, Diane is an advocate of lifelong learning. She recognized that what United had in place fit her idea of what active aging is all about. “I love this place. It’s full of programs and activities with a lot of opportunities to learn. There are partnerships with Mount Royal University and St. Mary’s University, Honens, the Calgary Philharmonic…and the art studio is unbelievable!”

Diane is a big fan of the arts. She has done some painting, and may indulge that passion again this fall, but she really likes quilting, and has produced a large number of works, some of which hang in her quilting room.

“It’s like being in a grand hotel,” said Diane. “I’m so impressed with everything. The meal schedule – the kitchen is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. with an open menu. You can have anything you want, any time you want. I’ve only been here a month and I’ve already booked the private dining room in December for my book club.”

Photos by Sherana Productions and Diane Osberg. Video by Sherana Productions.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

 

 

 


You're Browsing Community

United Active Living has created a new dining experience leader position in its two Calgary communities to enhance the dining experience for residents and their guests throughout the day. United has always had a flexible dining philosophy – eat what you want, with whom you want and whenever you want. There is no assigned seating and the kitchen is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The implementation of this new position raises the dining experience to a new level.

Food and beverage manager Ryan Bourquin shares a laugh with a resident

Food an beverage manager Ryan Bourquin shares a laugh with a resident

“The dining experience is very important in an older adult community,” said Ryan Bourquin, food and beverage manager. “That’s why we have such flexibility, but we’ve always wanted to add a front manager position – similar to a maitre ‘d position in any fine restaurant – who is essentially the head waiter, and who manages the service staff. The new position complements the chef’s position in each community. In this way, we will be able to ensure an even better experience for residents and their guests.”

The two dining experience leaders have long experience with United. They know the residents by name and are familiar with many of their preferences. By removing them from serving duties, they have more time to talk with residents and work with the servers. As well, the leaders will be involved in redecorating and redesigning the dining areas in each community. They attend financial meetings and new resident transition meetings, plus weekly wellness committee meetings where any significant changes in residents’ eating habits are relayed to every department in case the change might signal a general health issue that might need to be explored with the resident or family.

Jeanette Padilla discusses a special menu request from resident Diane Ness

Jeanette Padilla discusses a special menu request from resident Diane Ness

“I will often check with residents during meal times to be sure they are happy with the food and to ensure they get the best service possible,” said Jeanette Padilla, dining experience leader, Fish Creek. “The servers get to know each resident, and their food and seating preferences. Staff training is part of my responsibilities. While servers might have experience in restaurants, they may not have experience serving older customers, or residents with dementia, so I ensure the servers are trained to serve all residents with respect and patience.”

 

 

Violeta Cacho sets a table for four

Violeta Cacho sets a table for four

Violeta Cacho is the dining experience leader at Garrison Green. “It has always been my goal to provide exceptional food and service to residents and their families. I see that everybody works as a team and that residents are served with respect, much like you would find in a high-end restaurant.”

Ryan says one of the main responsibilities of the dining experience leaders is to be accessible to residents. Should a question or issue arise, the leaders are there to answer questions or resolve issues immediately. “Our flexible dining schedule also creates complexity. For instance, residents may wish to have family or friends join them at dinner. The dining experience leader will let the kitchen know that family members are coming in, and will ensure that seating is arranged to accommodate them. The leader position greatly improves communication. So far, the new positions have been well received by residents.”

“My wife and I chose Fish Creek because of the flexible dining options,” said Con Irving, who also sits on the resident council’s food committee. “As a former senior server, Jeanette really knows the job and how to talk with people. She’s the right person for the job. She watches for people coming in, and can move the servers around to accommodate them. The goal is to provide the best service possible. The dining experience leaders listen to the residents and promote communication. That’s so important.”

Photos and video by Sherana Productions.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

 


You're Browsing Community

Sharyn and Landis Kraus in their suite at Fish Creek West

Sharyn and Landis Kraus in their suite at Fish Creek West

Landis and Sharyn Kraus have lived at United Active Living’s Fish Creek community for two years, and they couldn’t be happier. The community offers a unique blend of lifestyles within a single community – independent living, assisted living and memory care options are available, as well as month-to-month rental and United’s Life Lease.

Landis and Sharyn chose a suite in Fish Creek West, which focuses on an independent lifestyle.

“We have a full kitchen, but we like to go down to the dining room for dinner,” said Sharyn. “We really like the flexibility. We sit with whom we want and eat what we want. If we want a steak sandwich at three in the afternoon, we can get one!”

 

Chef Ryan Bourquin serves Landis in the bistro

Chef Ryan Bourquin serves Landis in the bistro

“We aren’t locked into certain times to eat, or if we want something other than the evening special, we can just over off the menu. It’s all very flexible,” added Landis. “They have a private dining room that we can reserve for family functions. You can even bring your own bottle of wine down if you want!” added Sharyn.

“We didn’t think we would move into an adult community when we did,” said Sharyn. “But we felt it was prudent to research what was available in Calgary before we needed something. A friend suggested we have a look at the Fish Creek community on the United website. We liked what we saw, put our condo up for sale and moved in. We just love it. It’s perfect for us.”

 

 

The Fish Creek courtyard with bocce ball court, putting green and sitting areas

The Fish Creek courtyard with bocce ball court, putting green and sitting areas

The Krause’s chose a ground floor one bedroom suite that opens up onto the expansive inner courtyard. 

“The courtyard is one of a kind,” said Sharyn. “It’s so beautiful with fruit trees and flowers. There are always people out walking around or sitting. It’s really nice.”

“We’ll often see residents’ grandkids out playing on the bocce ball court or the putting green. It’s very family friendly,” said Landis.

“We really like living here. We have a full kitchen and in-suite laundry. At the same time, we can go to the dining room and access the theatre, gym and spa, plus there is a wealth of things to do,” she said. “The physical space drew us to the community but there are so many programs and activities, it just made sense. For instance, we were big fans of the CPO (Calgary Philharmonic) but stopped going because it was no longer convenient. But here, we started going again because United makes it so much easier to go. Plus, we have a lot of friends and family in Calgary, so we’re often out visiting.”

Like the Krauses and others who have moved to Fish Creek, the best time to research an older adult community either for yourself or a parent is when you don’t need one. Time is on your side, and the pros and cons can be weighed without the stress of a time constraint. Searching when your health takes a turn not only limits your choices, but decisions can easily be made in haste without a thorough consideration for the results.

“Another thing that was important to us,” added Sharyn, “is that we felt that moving from our home to another condo that didn’t have medical support, just to move a few years later to a place that does didn’t make any sense. The Fish Creek community has everything we need, or will need for the foreseeable future, so we may never have to move again. And with all of the personal belongings we have gathered over the years, that’s appealing!”

Photos and video by Sherana Productions.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!


You're Browsing Community

Bud and Betty Lou Purkiss getting in the Stampede spirit

Bud and Betty Lou Purkiss get in the Stampede spirit

Serving breakfast for a hundred or more is nothing new for the chefs at United’s two communities. And when it comes to Stampede season, the breakfasts bring out the cowboy and cowgirl in all of us.

Eggs, sausage or bacon, and pancakes and entertainment are traditional fare served for residents and their families at the annual Fish Creek community Stampede breakfast. Among those enjoying the festivities were Bud and Betty Lou Purkiss.

Add in a healthy dose of fun, family and flare, and everyone enjoyed a great week of Stampede  activities.

Joan Hutton recalls some of her Stampede memories

Joan Hutton recalls some of her Stampede memories

Fish Creek resident, 91-year-old Joan Hutton hasn’t missed a Calgary Stampede in 65 years. “I like the chuckwagon races and the crowds of people,” said Joan., who also took in the Fish Creek Stampede Breakfast. “I’ve been at Fish Creek about a year, and I just love it! The staff is great!”

Singer Jeff Pedora provided the country tunes at both Garrison Green and Fish Creek.

Garrison Green resident Jim Dolph, left, with family and friends

Garrison Green resident Jim Dolph, left, with family and friends

Over at Garrison Green, United joined forces with neighbour Carewest Garrison Green in a breakfast that brought both communities together for the 10th year in a row to enjoy pancakes, sausage and beans along with a wide assortment of pastries.

Added to the fun of the Stampede breakfasts this year for Fish Creek residents was the first community block party, hosted by the Father Lacombe  Care Society and involving the neighbouring Father Lacombe and Providence Care Centres. Music, trick dogs, horses and hay rides entertained residents.

Stampede  breakfasts and barbecues are popular with United’s residents throughout the year. They are an example of how United’s programs bring residents and families together into an active community that promotes friendship, activity and socialization.

Photos and video by Sherana Productions

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Garrison Green, watch this short video.


You're Browsing Community

Garrison Green resident care manager Keziah Angeles with resident Jane Kelly

Garrison Green resident care manager Keziah Angeles with resident Jane Kelly

“It’s important to us that employees are engaged and feel empowered to give residents the best experience,” said Kelly Johansson, director of human resources at United. The interaction between leadership, staff and residents is paramount in contributing to a positive living and working relationship at United’s two communities. While United encourages honest communication to improve life at United, United surveyed staff recently in an anonymous, third-party survey to confirm the ongoing feedback they were receiving. “The response from employees was overwhelmingly positive, but also highlighted a couple of areas that can be improved, which will help guide us in making living and working at United even more rewarding.”

Seventy percent of United staff completed the engagement survey, providing United with a comprehensive assessment of employee perceptions regarding the workplace and culture.

United's two art studios help residents produce amazing artwork. Here, Betty Earle at Garrison Green shows off one of her paintings

United’s two art studios help residents produce amazing artwork. Here, Betty Earle at Garrison Green shows off one of her paintings

United’s philosophy centres around a people-focused culture. The two communities are built on a social model rather than on a medical model of operations. This means that programs, lifelong learning and an active lifestyle are in the forefront of operational decisions. While the medical side is important and necessary, it operates in the background to ensure residents are looked after without staff in white coats and stethoscopes being an obvious part of the landscape.

“What we found was very encouraging and confirmed that staff find United a great place to work,” said Kelly. “Some 95% of staff said that doing their work well was satisfying, they understand what is expected of them and they understand United’s goals and philosophy.  Being an inclusive community – one that includes residents with dementia in all of our programs – is a unique business model. Not many older adult communities have moved in that direction. We encourage staff to spend time getting to know residents. This includes housekeepers, food servers, reception, programming, etc. It takes more time, but these are areas that are very important to us and to residents in order to maintain the positive lifestyle that residents expect, and the positive work/life balance that we encourage for staff.”

“I like the people I work with, I’m making a difference in the lives of residents, I like what I do” were the three top reasons for the high level of job satisfaction found in the survey.

Licensed practical nurse Cristine Torlao checks in with resident Ron Fraser

Licensed practical nurse Cristine Torlao checks in with resident Ron Fraser

“When I came here in October, 2017, I walked through the front door and heard laughter,” said Cristine Torlao, a licensed practical nurse. “It’s a very welcoming environment and I’m excited to come to work each day. There is no feeling of boss and staff. We are treated as friends not just employees. Important for me is that my perception of aging has changed. The residents here are lively and friendly. It’s a good environment to work in.”

“The staff are great here,” said resident Ron Fraser, who with his wife Irene, celebrated their 65th anniversary last September. “After  Irene passed away in February, the staff would greet me with a hug.  We were blessed to have moved in here when we did. Everyone is so helpful and nice. The servers are excellent and very friendly. One could not ask for more!”

Resident Jim Dolph moved into Garrison Green in 2014. Shortly afterwards, his wife passed away. “I was amazed at how much the staff cared about what was happening in my life. They genuinely care and are always there when I need it. The staff in every department is so caring – nursing, the arts and music programs, food services, housekeeping. Because we live in a community, there is always someone around. That wouldn’t be the case if I lived on my own. There’s a comfort there.” Jim, who also sits on the resident council, said that United’s philosophy encourages resident involvement. “We give them suggestions for programs and food services. For instance, the chef, Ryan Chisholm, sends surveys around asking residents for suggestions about the meals they would like served.”

“I think understanding about United’s philosophy goes back to who we are hiring. United is very different than where they may have worked before. It’s not just about delivering medication on time,” said Kelly. “It’s about living and working in a community, getting to know everyone as you would a family member, and being there for support when it’s needed. It’s encouraging that the survey confirmed that employees not only understand United’s philosophy but are engaged in it in everything they do.”

Photos and video by Sherana Productions.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

 

 


You're Browsing Community

“We fell in love with it right away!”

Inger Copland, who lives with husband Bill Fennell at United’s Fish Creek West, recalls the day they visited the Fish Creek community during an open house in 2016.

“Bill and I had been talking about making a move from our home, but we weren’t sure what that would look like,” said Inger.

They saw an ad for Fish Creek and toured the new community during an open house. “We didn’t need to look anywhere else,” she said. “This is exactly what we wanted.”

Inger and Bill put their home up for sale and it sold within a few days, which put them in a bind. “We thought it would take longer, which would allow us to move in October when the suites would be ready,” said Inger. “Management was very kind and allowed us to move in August, so we were the first ones to move into Fish Creek West.”

The community took a unique approach when it was planned. Fish Creek West is designed for independent living, while Fish Creek North is intended for those who need extra assistance.

 

Inger and Bill, who were married in 1998, chose a one-bedroom, two-bath suite on the fourth floor facing the mountains. Bill, who retired some 15 years ago after careers in construction and financial management had a condo in Mckenzie’s Mountain Park Estates. Inger was born and raised in Norway. She worked for Norwegian Cruise Lines and met Bill on a cruise. She moved to Calgary after they were married.

“Inger likes to paint and really likes the art studio. She has produced some very impressive paintings since we moved here,” said Bill. “I have Parkinson’s so I exercise in the fitness studio, and we’re very close to Fish Creek Park, so I can walk there when the weather is nice. When we lived in our house, we were often by ourselves. Here, there are other residents, so you never have to be alone.”

Both Inger and Bill are impressed with the quality of the programs available to residents. “There is more opportunity to do more things,” said Bill.  He plays cribbage in the evenings while Inger pursues her painting in the art studio.  Bill also enjoys the political discussions with visiting academics. “We wouldn’t have those if we still lived at home,” said Bill.

Inger with St. Mary's student Sean Burman

Inger with St. Mary’s student Sean Burman

Both Inger and Bill are working with students from nearby St. Mary’s University who are involved in a writing program similar to United’s writers-in-residence program, which has been operating for several years with students from Mount Royal University. The students conduct interviews, and are considering producing a book and a video about the residents’ lives.

 

 

Interested in learning more about life at Fish Creek? We’re having an open house in the community on Saturday, April 13 from 11 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. so be sure to mark your calendar and let your friends and family know. Register at the open house for a chance to win an entertainment gift basket.

If you plan on coming out, please let us know at rsvp@unitedactiveliving.com or call us at 403-471-3735.

Photos by United Active Living, Video by Sherana Productions.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!


You're Browsing Community

Older adults who have been living in the family home for many years may want to reassess their lifestyle by asking some basic questions. Does my home fit the lifestyle I would like to have? Is my house just a big to-do list? Is there too much house to look after?

At some point in home ownership, we often consider downsizing to a condo or moving to an older adult community where almost everything is looked after. So you should ask yourself, “If not now, when?” The best time to think about making your life easier is when you can take the time to weigh your options and make the decision for yourself.

United Active Living’s Fish Creek West gives you a unique way to live your life without downsizing your lifestyle.

United communities are nothing like the old nursing home. Everything is geared to the interests and likes of the residents. What you do is up to you. Enjoy your meals when you want and with whom you want. No assigned seating. Control stays in your hands.

That variety of choices extends to the type of suite you choose.

Fish Creek West is the first of its kind in Calgary. It provides you with the choice of elegant one bedroom, one bedroom plus den and two bedroom suites, some as large as 1,300 sq. ft.  with many features beyond your expectations. No maintenance, no worries. Everything is taken care of.

Plus, there’s a new world of opportunity in the adjacent 30,000 sq. ft. of high quality amenities. Fine dining, a casual bistro, theatre, art studio and a stunning outdoor courtyard dotted with sculptures, a water feature, orchard, bocce ball court and putting green are all available to you.

In 2017, United invited the artists who crafted the courtyard sculptures to talk about their art and the process of creativity.

 

Join an exercise, music or dance class. There’s yoga, meditation, a walking group and a gym. Afterwards, relax in the spa tub or sauna. Most importantly, you have unlimited access to lifelong learning programs, art workshops, outings to galleries and a lot more.

United’s signature Arts and Culture program features robust partnerships with leading arts organizations in the city. These partnerships not only bring residents to concerts and lectures outside of the Fish Creek community, but bring artists into the community for special concerts and workshops. You can attend art classes guided by professional artists, hear lectures from visiting professors, choose from a variety of fitness programs or attend a concert by a world-renowned musician.

The activities and programs available to you are endless.

CEO Kim O'Brien shares a laugh with resident Jim Dolph

CEO Kim O’Brien shares a laugh with resident Jim Dolph

“Today’s older adults have higher expectations about where and how they will live in their later years,” said Kim O’Brien, president, United Active Living. “What we have come to expect in a traditional nursing home has been replaced by communities that offer more. While the common expectation is that older adults will ‘age in place’, often the home a person has lived in for many years is no longer the best option for them. Instead, the focus should be on ‘aging in community’ where there is more support to ensure that a person ages well.

“It’s important to us that residents feel at home,” said Kim. “As such, our lifestyle programs and activities, our dining options with complete dining flexibility really promote that feeling of home, where the residents are in control. Don’t feel like cooking tonight? Pop into the bistro or dining room for a chef-inspired meal, or arrange takeout from the deli and enjoy the meal in your suite.”

Sharyn and Landis Krause moved into Fish Creek West 18 months ago, and enjoy the art studio and the variety of programs. “But you know one of the things that really impresses us is that the dining room is open 12 hours a day,” said Sharyn. “We can go any time and order anything off the menu. Plus, there is the freedom to sit with whom we want. That flexibility is really important to us. Plus the staff are all so friendly and kind!”

Fish Creek West is hosting an open house Saturday, April 13 from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Let your friends and family know. We are happy to show you around and answer any questions you may have. RSVP at 403-471-3735, or by email at rsvp@unitedactiveliving.com. Or, if you can’t make the open house, simply click the “get in touch” link below, and we would be pleased to arrange a private tour at your convenience.

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

Photos by United Active Living and Sherana Productions. Video by Sherana Productions.

You're Browsing Community

Jean and Dean Geddes have lived at United’s Fish Creek community for less than a year. They moved to Fish Creek West because the suite they chose was a perfect fit for their lifestyle.

“I’m a professional painter and find the north light is just perfect for my home studio,” said Jean. The dining room is large enough that they have set up an easel and paint supplies and still have plenty of room for a dining table.

Jean and Dean, who are both in their 80s, had been thinking about a move to an older adult community for several years. They shopped around and settled on Fish Creek West.

“We wanted to be proactive and make our own decisions about where we wanted to spend our senior years, and not be under time pressure to do so should something happen to either of us,” said Jean. “We’ve seen it with friends whose family had to take over in an emergency, and although they did their best, finding lodgings for the old folks, it could very well not be what they would have chosen for themselves. We didn’t want that and we didn’t want our children to take on that responsibility.”

Added Dean. “We didn’t want to continue living in a house we may not be able to look after as the years went by, so we started looking at downsizing three years ago. Our daughter-in-law suggested we look at United’s Fish Creek community. Its location put us closer to our family, and that was important to us.”

For the past 15 years, they had lived in a community just outside the city limits,  whose atmosphere was changing from the neighbourly interactions of a brand-new development to one of more social distance and with little community spirit. All this began to impact their social connections. “At United, we have the opportunity to be more social,” said Jean. “We’ve met some fabulous people from all walks of life, and have established a great network of friends here!”

As an artist, Jean gets her inspiration from nature, so she and Dean regularly spend time in the mountains, sometimes for just the day, but often for a week or more, so Jean can search out the scenes that catch her eye. “I set up my easel, paint, take photos, and Dean helps carry everything I need. In fact, his business card says ‘Sherpa’! she laughs.  “And,” she adds, ” because we are in wild animal country, Dean watches my back for bears.” Her work is currently displayed at a gallery in the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel and at the Collector’s Gallery of Art in Inglewood.

Jean is very impressed with the quality of the Fish Creek art studio, where professional artists work with residents of varying experience and talent. “They have very skilled and well-trained artists and teachers here,” said Jean. “Jeff Chan is so skilled at initiating projects for people who have never picked up a brush before. Every month there is something new!” The art studio is currently establishing a woodworking area, and also features a clay wheel and kiln where artist Lulu Suraya teaches residents about working with clay, and Chantel Traub and Maddison Klein bring their multi-disciplined creative skills.

Dean likes United’s philosophy and says it contributed to their decision to move here. “So often you hear about couples who are forced to separate when one develops a health issue. That doesn’t happen here. If one of us eventually needs extra assistance, we can move across the garden to Fish Creek’s North building, but the important things are that we will stay together and that we will stay in the same community with all of our friends.”

As well, Dean liked the fact that United is a Calgary company. Corporate decisions are made locally and quickly, and small requests are handled without delay. Both are pleased with the decision they made and don’t hesitate to have their friends and family over for visits or meals.

“Recently we invited some old friends over and we ate in the main dining room,” said Jean. “They really liked the ambience of the formal dining room, and were impressed with the food and service. There’s lots of variety and they have special menus for the various holidays. The kitchen staff is meticulous about cleanliness and the quality of the food, and the wait staff is friendly and well trained. A big plus for me is that at the end of the afternoon of painting in my studio, I no longer have to prepare a meal if I don’t want to.”

Check out Jean’s work at www.jeangeddesart.com

Fish Creek West is holding an open house Saturday, April 13 from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 14720 – 1st. St. S.E., just south of St. Mary’s University. Let us know you’re coming by calling 403-471-3735, or emailing to: rsvp@unitedactiveliving.com

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

Photos and video by Sherana Productions.

 


You're Browsing Community

Residents and staff at United’s Fish Creek community have created close working relationships that have evolved, in many cases, into meaningful friendships.

While employees are traditionally seen as separate from residents because of their role, many staff at United find themselves becoming an integral part of a family’s inner circle due to the relationships they create.

“I’m very impressed with the caring and respect shown by the staff here,” said Conrad Irving, who with his wife Dorothy, moved into Fish Creek North. “It’s hard to put into words, but the relationship with staff has grown deeper. In the couple of years we have lived here, we have found that staff have become more like family.”

Both Conrad and Dorothy are very involved in the arts and music programs that United offers. Dorothy, who is experiencing memory issues, is also part of United’s unique United Minds program.

“I was one of their first contacts when they moved into Fish Creek,” said Becky Robertson, United Minds aide. “We built up a trusting relationship and I feel a deep connection with them. They are very welcoming people and I feel that I’m part of their family.”

“I would adopt her if I could!” laughs Conrad. “She is more than simply a staff member. There is such energy and compassion in the time she spends with Dorothy.”

Becky is one of several staff members that Conrad and Dorothy consider as close friends. Jeanette Padilla is another. She became involved with United more than eight years ago, first as a volunteer in the art studio at Garrison Green, then she moved full time into food services.  “I treat everyone with TLC (tender loving care), like they are close family members,” said Jeanette, Lead Server at Fish Creek. “If Dorothy usually comes in for a meal, but misses a day, I always ask if everything is okay. It’s important to me that the residents are happy and comfortable.”

Jenny from the nursing department, who comes in each morning to help Dorothy get ready for the day, and Kim Coulter, who oversees the programming at United are also counted as close friends.

“Jenny has become part of our family,” said Conrad. “I hear Dorothy and Jenny laughing and that starts our day off on such a positive note. As Dorothy’s main caregiver, I always put her needs first and sometimes forget about mine. But with Jenny here, her presence and support is invaluable.”

“Every time I come in to work, I look forward to connecting with our residents. Dorothy is special to me. I treat Dorothy and all the residents as I would my own family,” said Jenny. “I always bring a smile and laughter. I want to make each day a good one for them!”

Conrad also considers Kim Coulter a good friend. “With Kim, I can speak with her about anything I might have on my mind. She is a terrific listener, and always has a way of giving me the right advice just when I need it.”

Kim said that building trust and truly caring about the residents is what leads to meaningful friendships. She recalls a time when a new resident was reluctant to go on an outing. She agreed to go but only if Kim went with her. The two held hands the whole way and the resident was glad she had made the trip. That small gesture opened the door for the resident to go on more outings and explore new things.

Kim, Conrad and Dorothy have built a similar friendship, and she is honoured that Conrad trusts her to share his concerns. “He is very supportive of the programming work that we do. The programs are based on what the residents want so their input is very important. The residents are so involved in everything. Building friendships and trust – it’s a two-way street and a big part of what strengthens our community as a whole.”

“The staff at Fish Creek have made our stay here enjoyable,” said Conrad. “They really care about us. They just want to be here for us, and that has become something special for our family. Coming to Fish Creek was a lifestyle change for us, but the staff has gone above and beyond to make our new home enjoyable and comfortable. I can’t say enough about how positive that’s been for us.”

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

Photos by United Active Living, Sherana Productions. Video by Sherana Productions.

 


You're Browsing Community

When you’ve spent many years living in your home or community, it can be a difficult decision to move, especially when moving to Calgary from another province.

“It was a tremendous change for me to come here,” said Dagmar Albert, a long-time resident of White Rock, B.C. She moved in October to United’s Fish Creek community. “I had a townhouse in B.C. but I fell and had trouble getting around, so my daughter in Calgary started looking around and found that Fish Creek was a great place to live. My family was very supportive and helped make the transition a smooth one. There are a lot of little things that need to be handled but having family and friends to help makes the job much easier.”

 

Barbara Burns moved into the Fish Creek community last summer from her home in Kelowna, B.C. She lives next door to Dagmar in Fish Creek West, which offers a completely independent lifestyle. “The hardest part was leaving my friends. I got pneumonia and my family from Calgary drove out often to see me, but it was hard on them, so when they suggested I move to Calgary, I knew it would make things easier for everyone. The move was very easy, and I kept most of my furniture, so my new suite feels in many ways like my home in Kelowna. We love our kids and their children. Moving here gives them peace of mind, and I know they are nearby.”

While leaving friends behind is difficult, Dagmar and Barb have become close friends, and living in a community gives them a chance to make new friends and explore their interests.

“I was sitting in one of the chairs near the elevator when Dagmar was moving in,” explained Barb. “We got to talking and found out we had a lot in common. There was something there, so our friendship just grew from that.”

Both Barb and Dagmar were attracted to the openness of their new home. “As soon as I saw how open and spacious the common areas are, that was what made my decision,” said Dagmar. “There are so many glass doors, large windows and the large courtyard. There is so much light, I really get a sense of freedom here.” Barb agrees. “We looked around at other places before deciding to move. I really liked the courtyard, the spaciousness. There is lots of light. You don’t feel constricted. Plus my suite faces west, the same as my condo in Kelowna so I get the sun in the same way.”

Barb was also drawn to the variety of programs Fish Creek offers. “We like to go to the concerts they have here. I haven’t tried the art studio yet, but I might give acrylic painting a try.”

“For me, I’m more into writing,” said Dagmar. “I was a member of the Langley Writer’s Guild for many years. I’m drawn to fiction and history. Right now I’m tracking my ancestry, which I find fascinating.”

Both Dagmar and Barb can’t say enough about the staff. “This place has it all,” said Dagmar. “The staff are simply amazing. It’s so nice to see how they treat people who need a little extra help. So much kindness, dignity and respect.”

One question prospective residents ask themselves is, “Would I be happy inviting friends and family over?”

Both were enthusiastic in their response. “We’re really proud to have our families over for dinner. The dining room is open any time during the day. The meals are great and the staff is so welcoming. Even though moving was stressful, we couldn’t be happier with our decision.”

Why wait? Arrange a tour today! Lunch is on us!

Imagine! Flex your creative side. Fine dining. New friends. Luxurious suites. Live the lifestyle you deserve at one of our United Active Living communities. Click the button on the right to arrange a tour at Garrison Green or Fish Creek

Do you know a friend or family member who could benefit from living in a United community? Send them a link to our website or blog, or arrange a tour. We are happy to help! 

To learn more about life at United’s Fish Creek community, watch this short video.

Contact us here!

Photos by United Active Living, Sherana Productions. Video by Sherana Productions.