Many Long-Term Care Homes across Ontario have established a dedicated family council within their homes. In these Family Councils, members have successfully set aside goals and aspirations to help improve the quality of life for their loved ones within the Long-Term Care Home. A Family Council is an organized, self-led, and self-determining group of people composed of family and friends of the residents living in the Long-Term Care Homes. The main purpose of a Family Council is to improve the quality of life for Long-Term Care residents and to give families and friends a forum for sharing their experiences, leanings, and other valuable information within the home. A Family Council works together with residents’ family members, friends, and the Long-Term Care Home to identify and resolve any issues that affect the resident’s quality of life.
Here are some examples of what Family Council have accomplished with other Ontario Long-Term Care Homes in the past:
- Members of one Family Council advocated for new doors in the Alzheimer unit to improve resident safety.
- Air-conditioning was installed in one Home at a Family Council’s recommendation.
- Family Council worked with a local municipality to include curb ramps around the building of their Long-Term Care Home so residents using wheelchairs could leave the property.
Some of the benefits of having a Family Council in your Long-Term Care Home is that it allows families to give each other ongoing mutual support and encouragement by sharing thoughts and feelings with others who also have relatives in a Long-Term Care Home. Not only that, a Family Council provides an opportunity to become knowledgeable about the Long-Term Care Home’s operations, policies, and rules. This can be especially helpful for families of new residents in the home.
Starting in June 2019, Bay Haven Care Community began a Family Council. So far, our Family Council is small, but we would like to increase the number of participants as much as possible! Each Family Council at a Long-Term Care Home is unique to that individual Home; however, they all share the same goals and aspirations, and that is to provide additional care for your loved ones.
To promote and raise awareness for Bay Haven’s Family Council, we will be hosting a tea social on Wednesday, October 16th, 2019 at 6:00 PM at the Recreation Room in the Long-Term Care side of Bay Haven. At this social, there will be a PowerPoint presentation explaining more about Family Council and what it means to us. We will also be giving a tutorial on how to navigate the Bay Haven Facebook Page. This social will be a great way to introduce potential new members our Family Council at Bay Haven. At this social, you will be learning more about our goal to create a well-established Family Council at Bay Haven, our mission, and the date and time for the next upcoming meeting. We highly recommend and encourage all current resident family members to attend our event.
If you have any relatives in Bay Haven’s Long-Term Care Home and would like to volunteer your time to be part of our Family Council, please contact Bay Haven Care Community at (705)-445-6501 and ask for either April Lawson (Recreation Manager) or Marco Sanfilippo (Marketing Specialist) for more information. Do not forget to attend our tea social to meet us and learn more about Family Council at Bay Haven.
NOTE: Since Bay Haven is under an outbreak, we may have to postpone our social to another date. We will update everyone once the outbreak is gone.
Marco Sanfilippo – Marketing Specialist/Recreation Assistant.