BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — Personal connections between staff and residents. Mouthwatering and nutritious food. Activities and care that improve mental and physical well-being. That’s what it takes to create an award-winning senior living community, according to A Place for Mom.
Last week, StoryPoint Waterville received A Place for Mom’s Community and Provider Engagement Award. It’s the second award in the past few months, as the facility also was recently named Best in Senior Living by Caring.com.
For StoryPoint resident Jim “P.J.” Schulker, it’s the caring, engaged staff that really makes the difference in his new home.
P.J. moved into the Waterville community in April 2021, after his wife of 53 years, Peggy, died a few months earlier. The transition couldn’t have been easier, he said, thanks to the employees who work together to make sure residents are offered a variety of activities for interaction and learning. P.J. attends a weekly Bible study and church service offered through Hope United Methodist Church at StoryPoint. He also plays bingo, creates artwork and enjoys great food, he said.
“I’m having the best time of my life right now,” he said. “It’s a team effort. Everyone works together.”
StoryPoint’s pillars are to give residents a feeling of safety and belonging, something to look forward to and peace of mind, said Nichole Alexander, life enrichment director.
Residents Pat Krzeminski and “Lucky” Larry Przeslawski agree with P.J. that StoryPoint has become like home.
“One of the things I noticed right off the bat was the cleanliness and the people working with you to make sure which apartment fits your needs,” said Pat, who moved in last April after her husband of 60 years passed away. While living home alone, she fell and broke her collarbone, so her adult children urged her to look into StoryPoint. The staff members, from the receptionists to the cooks and the maintenance people, are all friendly and helpful, Pat said. That made the transition easier.
“It’s a new chapter in my life,” said Pat, who said that while she’s content to sit inside her apartment, reading or crocheting, she welcomes the opportunity to get out and meet people like Larry and his wife, Doris.
Married for 68 years, Larry and Doris lived in Lambertville, Mich., then Florida for 18 years before returning to the area to be closer to their two sons, who live in Waterville and Whitehouse.
After back surgeries, Larry has to use a walker, but he still works out daily in the fitness center and plays bingo – which earned him the nickname “Lucky Larry” for his frequent wins.
“You have to stay busy. You can’t sit in your room and watch TV,” Larry said.
P.J. agrees. Getting over the loss of Peggy was tough, but he now describes himself as happy, especially as he makes friends at StoryPoint.
“This is my family now,” he said.
StoryPoint Waterville offers independent living, enhanced living, assisted living and memory care services. Unique to StoryPoint, enhanced living is an “in-between” service offering all the benefits of independent living plus personalized care services for those who benefit from extra support.
A Place for Mom is a for-profit ratings and reviews site for senior care providers in North America, featuring over 14,000 senior living communities and trusted by over 300,000 families every year. Its annual awards recognize the best of the communities, and the Community and Provider Engagement Award is the most exclusive honor – given to providers that have received an average rating of 4.5/5 across 25 or more reviews by seniors and their families. Only the top 1 percent of senior living and home care providers in the U.S. and Canada earn this top honor from seniors and their families.
StoryPoint Waterville is located at 1470 Pray Blvd in Waterville. To learn more about the award and StoryPoint, call (419) 878-1000.