The Greens at Cannondale offers free respite care for seniors

To give both senior citizens and those who care for them a break, The Greens at Cannondale, an assisted living community on Danbury Road, is offering a new opportunity. The Guest Resident Program is a free, two-week stay for one senior every two weeks.
The staff at The Greens has furnished one of the studio apartments, with handicap-accessible bathroom, previously used for long-term residents and dedicated it for the free respite program.
It now has a bed, chairs, a television and dresser.
Guests would need only bring clothing, toiletries and medications.
“It’s like checking into a hotel,” said Director of Marketing and Community Relations Chris Rose.
But the similarities end there, for unlike a stay at a hotel, which bills by the night, a stay at The Greens under the Guest Resident Program is completely free.
“There’s no catch whatsoever,” said Rose, who explained The Greens hopes only to be remembered down the road, and maybe to attract a permanent resident here or there.
“The Greens has always done things for the community to help the seniors in our area, and this is just another extension of those services we provide,” Rose said. “We’re just hoping someone comes here and sees everything we have to offer.”
If there is availability, it does not matter if you live in Wilton, or even in Fairfield County; the Guest Resident Program is open to all those in Connecticut.
In addition to care and assistance if needed, as well as three daily “restaurant-style” meals, The Greens offers a variety of activities as part of the program, including excursions, musical entertainment, and lectures from speakers, doctors and therapists.
“We put a big emphasis on art and music,” said Rose. “Those are the things that seniors tend to connect with most, especially as they age.”
Religious needs are also attended to; The Greens has a priest come to the community to say Mass every Wednesday, and a rabbi every Friday for the Friday night Shabbat. There is also a visit to Our Lady of Fatima Roman Catholic Church on Sundays.
Participants in the program would receive the same care from the same staff members as full-time residents.

A break for all

Just as the Guest Resident Program is a respite for seniors, it is a respite for those who regularly care for them.
“A lot of times when family members are overseeing the care of an elderly parent or loved one, it can be stressful,” said Rose. “If they want to vacation, if they have young children attending out-of-town sporting events or if they have business out of town, there’s a lot of stress.”
She noted that even if a caregiver can manage to get away from their responsibility for a time, the worrying does not end there.
“The minute you leave your home, you’re constantly worried about what-ifs. What if they fall, if they don’t take their medication, if they wander outside? This is an opportunity for caregivers to have two weeks of a break.”
According to Rose, with enrollment in the program, “a caregiver can walk away knowing that their loved one   is taken care of.”
“We’re professionals; we do this 365 days a year for over 100 residents and have been doing it for 16-plus years,” she said.
Information: 203-761-1191.