SarahCare of Snellville expands building and adult daycare options
By Beth Volpert Johansen
Every day at SarahCare is an adventure. Whether the clients are in the center for the day or out riding the very comfortable bus to the movies, lunch, or museums, SarahCare friends have a wide variety of options for spending their days in comfortable, stimulating, and safe surroundings.
The already pleasant surroundings of SarahCare Snellville are about to become even bigger and better.
A bright day room with television, comfortable seating, games, interactive crafts, physical and occupational therapy, and delicious meals provide clients with a pleasant place to spend their days. At SarahCare, the staff and clients are like family. They share birthdays, celebrations, sorrow, and joy each day with a capacity for caring that goes beyond the idea of “Caregiver.” Nursing staff provide physical care that includes bathing, medicines, and care for both the physically and cognitively impaired. “We enjoy so much activity here,” says Owner/Director Aysha Cooper. “Scouts, ministers, and even a therapy dog visit with us; there is always something going on.”
Above: Aysha Cooper and her son Drew enjoyed celebrating France by building the Eiffel Tower out of Legos with some of the SarahCare of Snellville participants.
Expanding the physical space is not only about preparing for additional participants, but adding the touches and spaces that Aysha had planned for since she first opened SarahCare of Snellville five years ago. “I am most excited about our sensory room and the men’s den,” says Aysha. Caring for those with the cognitive impairments that often accompany the onset of Alzheimer’s, is just one of Aysha’s passions. “We are adding special touches to make it SarahCare of Snellville a dementia friendly environment.”
In addition to the flooring, wall paint and lighting considerations, Aysha and her staff have planned for a sensory room. “When clients find themselves overstimulated by activity, noise, or other people, they can retreat to our sensory room.” Lighting in the room is ambient with soft, relaxing music, and diffused oils designed to help calm the senses. The room will also serve as a library and Aysha welcomes donations of books to help them get established.
Not one to sit still very long, Aysha Cooper always has something going. The entrepreneur has just finished her master’s degree at the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business. “Now I can say I am a true Bulldog!” says Aysha. “I think I went in with theidea to get a better business perspective and now I have a better idea of business as a whole.” That idea of better business not only translated into her expansion plans, but also solidified her instinct to teach her 8 year-old son, Drew, about business, people, and compassion.
Above: Drew Cooper works with his friends at SarahCare of Snellville to build the Eiffel Tower from Legos.
Recently, Drew employed some of the skills he learned from his mom in order to teach a Lego lesson to the men of SarahCare. In keeping with theme of “Country of the Month”, Drew chose the Eiffel Tower Lego kit for France. He read a book aloud about the Eiffel Tower and shared some pictures. He proceeded through his presentation with the instruction booklet and began building with the men at his table. “I felt most of them were happy because they were smiling,” says Drew. “I would definitely do it again and I want to encourage other kids to come do projects with older people-I think it makes them feel young again.”
SarahCare continues to provide a safe adult day care option for loved ones who wish to remain at home, but cannot stay alone during the day. With the new activities space and service options, SarahCare’s staff are excited about what they can offer to the clients who mean so much to them. One of the staff, Jose Quezada, says, “The men’s den will give the guys a place to band together where they can have activities that they will like.” With their VA contract, the center is able to help provide a good daytime experience for veterans who need more specialized care, but still reside with loved ones.
Another of Aysha’s passions is caregiver support. She and Susan Munroe, RN have paired up to facilitate Powerful Tools for Caregivers, a six-week educational program for caregivers. They utilize The Caregiver Helpbook that is designed to provide caregivers with tools to increase self-care and give them confidence in handling difficult situations. “We will now have a large conference room that will enable us to continue supporting the families of our clients,” says Aysha.
Left: SarahCare of Snellville's new floorplan expands service areas, caregiver space, and unique options for the participants at their newly remodeled location.
Expanding in space, services, and compassion are all a part of the overall plan. While the plan is just good business, for Aysha and her team, it is far more. The seams are bursting with excitement and enthusiasm at SarahCare. Aysha can hardly contain herself at the thought of walls coming down and space growing to serve the elder population that is dear to her heart.
For more information visit: sarahcare.com/snellville/