The Six Top Questions To Ask Yourself When Looking for an Older Adult Community

It is important when looking for retirement options that you can continue to live your current lifestyle while knowing you are able to plan for continuing care should you need it.

A jazz trio performs in the Fish Creek courtyard
A jazz trio performs in the Fish Creek courtyard

Our Garrison Green and Fish Creek communities offer a wide range of floor plans and amenities, unique programming, our revolutionary dementia care program and, of course, very flexible meal times and menus.

We are pleased to once again offer in-person tours by appointment and in accordance with COVID-19 protocols. Call us for a virtual or in-person tour today.

Besides the more common questions about cost, size of the suites, floor plans and amenities, there are other questions that you should ask yourself that can have a big impact on your quality of life.

1 – Should I consider a move during the COVID-19 pandemic?

United follows the strictest COVID-19 response protocols to ensure our residents, their families and our employees are kept healthy. We follow and exceed the guidelines provided by Alberta’s chief medical officer of health and according to our communities collective risk tolerance.

Living at home might not provide the same kind of support you may need, whether it’s running errands or preparing meals. As well, social distancing can take its toll emotionally and mentally, so living in a supportive community is beneficial.

At United, you never need to feel alone. Online programs, innovative ways to connect and socialize within a supportive community of friends are all part of the benefits of living at United.

2 – I may be healthy now, but what happens when I experience a health change? How will the community respond to that?

United ensures that health issues are well managed, and provides residents with the peace of mind that a crisis won’t force a move away from the community. There is nursing support available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The United approach is focused on each person within a social model of care rather than a medical model. That means that we see each resident as a person. We focus on a person’s strengths not their medical conditions, and the residents tell us how they want to live. We ask ourselves with each interaction how we can make their lives enjoyable and meaningful.

3 – Will I be separated from my spouse if one of us develops health issues?

An important part of our philosophy is to support the close ties that spouses have by helping them remain together if they choose. Husbands, wives or life partners often want to stay together no matter the health issues they face. The two then can participate in programs and activities that support the general well-being of both.

4 – Will I be able to continue living in my suite should my cognitive abilities change?

Our art studios provide a creative environment
Our art studios provide a creative environment

Research has shown that those with dementia do better when included within the general community population. At United we are an inclusive community and do not segregate based on level of care. All residents are encouraged to participate in programs and events.

Living with dementia does not mean you have to stop being who you are.  You are able to have new adventures, to make new friends and to learn new things.

At United, we have purposely designed our environments, our United Minds program and our specialized staff education to support you in maintaining your independence.

5 – What do I want the next chapter of my life to look like?

Living a full life in your later years is a focus at United communities. Programs are designed around the interests of the residents. The art studios, for instance, are open and facilitated by professional artists. A kinesiologist leads exercise classes and can also design individual programs. We have a dozen partnerships that give the residents opportunities to be involved in different aspects of arts and culture in Calgary –  for example Calgary Civic Symphony, Lunch Box Theatre and the Calgary Philharmonic. During the pandemic we continue to offer world-class programs remotely.

6 – What is my initial reaction to visiting the community? Do I feel comfortable and welcome? Can I see myself living here?

Meeting new friends is a benefit of living in a community
Meeting new friends is a benefit of living in a community

Residents have told us that they felt immediately at home when they first entered one of our communities. That’s the way it should be. Making new friends, learning new things and enjoying life are some of the reasons new residents choose a United community. This is your new home and it should feel that way.

Photos by United Active Living. Videos by Sherana Productions.

Take a look at our new commercial, Life Experiences.

Talk with one of our active living advisors about life in a United community. They can arrange tours of our Garrison Green and Fish Creek communities. If 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 future visit. We are happy to help! 

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

Or, to find out more about life at United’s Garrison Green, watch this short video.

Contact us here!