The Linden Ponds family continues to shine despite COVID-19

Linden Ponds residents, staff work together to stay safe, secure during pandemic

Created date

May 5th, 2020
An exterior shot of the community, the front entrance of the building in bloom for spring

Linden Ponds immediately took action when the coronavirus hit to keep residents and employees safe and secure. The Erickson Living-managed community has earned high praise from the people who live and work there as well as from family members.

Linden Ponds works quickly to preempt COVID-19 impact on its residents

When stay-at-home orders were enacted around the country in response to the coronavirus pandemic, simple things like buying toilet paper, getting exercise, and staying in touch with loved ones became difficult. But thanks to quick action taken by Erickson Living’s management team and the staff at Linden Ponds, sheltering in place was much easier and more comfortable for the more than 1,300 retirees who live in the community. 

Even before the first case of COVID-19 was reported in the U.S., Erickson Living enacted its emergency preparedness plan and assembled a task force, which met multiple times a day to review reports from the CDC as well as local health departments and governments. Safety measures, such as restricting nonessential visitors and screening staff and essential visitors for COVID-19 symptoms, were quickly put in place at all Erickson Living-managed communities.

“All across our family of communities, residents and staff are taking extraordinary steps to protect the health and safety of our loved ones, friends, neighbors, and caregivers,” Erickson Living CEO Alan Butler wrote in a letter to all employees and residents. “Your support and willingness to help are an inspiration to us all—and a reminder that if we band together, we can overcome any challenge.”

Plans in place to keep Linden Ponds safe

At Linden Ponds, the staff worked hard to enable residents to remain comfortable in their apartment homes. Mail and newspapers were delivered directly to residents’ doors, and the staff even walked their dogs. Instead of risking exposure to the virus by going to the grocery store, Linden Ponds residents were fortunate to have meals delivered to their doors by the dining services staff. 

“They are doing a wonderful job feeding us,” says Marilyn Stewart. “They give us a menu, and we can choose what we want for each day. They deliver three days of food at a time, and it’s very plentiful. They give us enough for snacks and breakfast, like yogurt and fruit.”

Linden Ponds even set up a concierge service to help residents get basic supplies. People who ran out of necessities like shampoo, coffee, tea, or toilet paper could simply call the front desk and a staff member would deliver the items to their doors.

Residents and staff find ways to maintain social connections

Staying connected with friends and family was a challenge for everyone while social distancing measures were in place. Residents at Linden Ponds, of course, discontinued club meetings and other gatherings during the pandemic, but measures were put in place to help them stay connected and maintain some of their routines.

The fitness department created exercise videos that were aired on the in-house TV station, and the movie club streamed the films they would normally show on the big screen. Community Services Manager Molly Lynch St. John stayed in touch with residents by sending out a daily email with short stories, poetry, photos, and links to interesting websites for entertainment and travel.

“There are residents that I hear from who are finding ways to play bridge online, meet with their book clubs through Zoom, and connect with family and friends through Zoom,” Lynch St. John says. “I met one resident couple when I was delivering a package, and they were dressing up to do a Zoom talent show with their other family members.”

Marilyn played bridge online with some of her Linden Ponds neighbors while the stay-at-home directive was in place. She also dialed into a Lifelong Learning class about capitalism that met on Zoom since they couldn’t gather in person. 

People at Linden Ponds often describe the community as a big family, and they had a chance to prove how true it is during the pandemic. Marilyn, who is a member of the Resident Advisory Council, which acts as a liaison between residents and staff, says the group started a telephone chain to make sure everyone stayed connected. 

“We have 70 people helping us, we divided up the community and we’re calling people to check on them to make sure they’re okay,” Marilyn says. 

 

If you're interested in learning more about Linden Ponds, request a free brochure here or learn more about other Erickson Living-managed communities.

 

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