Quality of Life
“I’ve recovered my health and strength in part from the respect and consideration shown to me by staff and volunteers. We direct our own lives but cooperate as a family—and the price is right!”
An Abbeyfield Resident
One of the greatest risks to a senior’s ongoing good health and wellbeing is isolation. Isolated seniors tend to develop physical as well as mental health issues, and many suffer from poor nutrition, which can contribute to or aggravate serious health problems. Today, seniors account for nearly half of the country’s healthcare spending; but that is expected to increase substantially as our population continues to age.
Then, there is the cost of retirement homes, which can hit many older adults with modest retirement incomes quite hard. Many older Canadians are forced to make difficult choices as their options shrink. The loss of a spouse, an accident, or an illness can also change circumstances irrevocably and call into question one’s ability, or even the wisdom, to continue living alone.
Time and again, Abbeyfield residents enthusiastically report how their lives improved dramatically after their decision to move into an Abbeyfield home. They most often speak of the companionship they have found and the friends they have made. They speak, too, of family and a sense of belonging. They find renewed energy and interest in life, through activities, events and shared experiences, and by continuing to be part of the community. Combined with pleasant, comfortable surroundings, good meals and a sense of ease and security, their quality of life and overall wellbeing are substantially enhanced.
Abbeyfield homes offer Canadian seniors an inviting alternative to large, more impersonal retirement home settings where loneliness can still become an issue, or when living with relatives is not a viable option. They fill a gap for independent seniors who are not quite ready for assisted living or long-term care but who, at the same time, no longer feel comfortable living on their own, with all of its attendant chores and responsibilities.
An Abbeyfield home can help to keep seniors in the communities they know and love, and that means close to their families as well. Too often, in order to find suitable housing, many seniors are forced to move farther away from the very communities they helped to shape and build. This only exacerbates their isolation and loneliness, which can often lead to depression and ill health. Keeping seniors healthy and happy can help to avoid costly, long-term care before it is needed.
Abbeyfield Houses clearly fill an overlooked niche in the continuum of senior care and housing offered in communities across this country. Abbeyfield is the much-needed option for independent yet solitary seniors who seek companionship but who do not require complex medical care. It is a successful, caring model that we know works.
You could say that wellbeing is our bottom line.