From Brenda Palmer, Holland Community Center:

We have been doing all sorts of things while “closed”.  We immediately started a Thursday night bingo through facebook but because it lagged and there was little interaction, we changed it over to the Zoom format.  We also have zoom coffee socials and zoom exercise classes. We are working with Bemis Farms to get gardening kits for seniors to pick up, or get delivered.  I have been calling one senior every day who asked for a daily call.  I have learned a lot about isolation during all of this.    From talking with her every day I have learned that the weather, and daily hygiene affect moods.  Interactions will make a difference.  So recently we have purchased some robotic cats for the Center.  I let this woman “babysit” one of the cats during isolation and she’s enjoying spontaneous meows.  She said she threw her night coat onto her bed and the cat yelled at her about it.

But the funniest thing that happened, or at least it was really cute, was that I thought that the isolated seniors needed more interactions.  We have hired a musician to go from house to house (7 houses one day, 8 houses another day) to sing 4 songs to each senior.  I mentioned it to the same woman with the cat and she started laughing so hard.  She said “What are the neighbors going to say about a man serenading me?”

Massachusetts Councils
on Aging

116 Pleasant Street, Suite 306
Easthampton, MA 01027
Telephone: 413-527-6425
Fax: 413-527-7138