Mandy Truman, left, and Jeannine Krefting run the the West Coast Recreation Adult Day Program that has now expanded to three days a week. - Karly Blats photo

Parksville adult day program expands to three days per week

West Coast Recreation Adult Day Program helps individuals with cognitive and physical challenges

Parksville’s West Coast Recreation Adult Day Program has expanded its schedule to three days per week—Monday, Tuesday and Friday.

The day program, operating out of St. Edmunds church hall, offers engaging activities for people with physical or cognitive challenges as well as those with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

The program opened in October 2017, at one day per week, to support seniors and their caregivers, helping them to remain independent in the community for as long as possible, and eventually evolved to two days a week and now three. Monday is the newest day added to the schedule with registrations currently being taken.

The program is run by Jeannine Krefting and Mandy Truman, who are both certified fitness instructors and have extensive backgrounds in recreational therapy and health care.

Krefting and Truman said they began the program because they knew there was a huge need for adult day programs in the community.

“Jeannine and I are very like-minded in our respect for seniors and our elders and we wanted an exemplary program that celebrated who they are and help them stay in the community in a positive way,” Truman said. “For our day program and most day programs they can come here and be accepted for exactly what they are which is very, very powerful so their confidence goes up and it reflects throughout their life.”

The program runs from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. but individuals can be accommodated for however many hours they are comfortable with. The program includes exercise activities, group discussion, art therapy, pet therapy, baking, crafts, music programs, horticulture and board games. A homemade lunch, snacks, coffee and tea are also provided.

“Stimulation is the major one because a lot of [the participants], if they didn’t have anything to do they’d sit at home,” Krefting said. “This gives them some way of making friends having that social time, kind of breaking away form their normal routine.”

The program also benefits caregivers and family members by offering them respite, support and resources.

Eventually Truman and Krefting hope to expand the program to five or six days a week and offer more services like a hair salon, bathing program and foot care and eventually have their own facility.

“We want to give them whatever they want and we want to be creative throughout the whole thing,” Truman said.

The cost of the program is $75 for each six-and-a-half-hour day. For more information about the program, contact Krefting at 250-240-0692, Truman at 250-937-8016 or email westcoastrecreation7@gmail.com.

karly.blats@pqbnews.com

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