Pacifica Takes Part

By on Sep 12, 2019 in Events, News

This week is National Assisted Living Week (NALW), and senior living communities across the country are busy hosting activities for the annual observance. This year’s theme, “A Spark of Creativity,” challenges residents, family and staff to try their hand at arts that enrich the senior living experience.

At Pacifica Senior Living in Oxnard, California, there’s multiple events lined up throughout the week for residents, and all the activities are refreshingly different. “I want the residents to really step outside their comfort zone and do what they set their mind to,” said Christina Alvarado, activities director for Pacifica in Oxnard. “So I pick things that I would do with my own friends. Something fun and easy and unique, where everyone comes away with their own outcome.”

Just check out this list of events that Christina and staff have scheduled for NALW:

Drip painting – Take two to four colors of paint and drip them onto a canvas, turning the canvas as you go. The end result is a marbleized, swirling mix of color. It’s simple to do, and everyone’s canvas is special. “It brings out their creativity in a way they wouldn’t have imagined,” said Christina.

Fabric pots – Get different types of fabric in a range of patterns and colors and use a sealant to adhere them to pots. The fabric becomes part of the pot, which helps them stand out from the usual painted style. At Pacifica, residents are also planting aloe in their pots, making them both decorative and practical.

Cracked gem pendants – Buy regular big glass beads from any glass store, heat them up and then cool them in water. The abrupt temperature change fractures the glass, creating a small spider-web canvas for residents to bring their creativity to. They apply nail polish on the back and paint them any way they like. The colors then show through from the back in a fractal style that’s unique to every resident.

Museum field trip – For the final day of the week, Christina wanted an excursion that would get residents out of their familiar settings and into a more creative mindset. She chose to visit the Bell Arts Factory, a community-based art gallery in Ventura, California, which is home to over 30 local artist studios. Residents can tour a wide collection of artwork from creators of all ages.

In addition to being fun ways to spend time, activities like these help draw the community together, said Christina. “It gets them out of their apartments, gets them talking and hanging out. The social aspect is one of the biggest benefits.” And of course, there’s the physical takeaway too. Residents keep whatever they create, either using the arts to decorate their rooms or give as gifts to loved ones.

Looking for creative ideas at your own community? Let Pacfica’s examples inspire you. Visit their website and follow them on Facebook to see what they’re up to.