Be The Change at Homestead Hills

– Jennifer Brown –

What is your position at Homestead Hills?

Social Director

How long have you been at Homestead Hills?

I have been at RidgeCrest, our sister community in Mount Airy, North Carolina for three and a half years and starting at Homestead Hills in July.

What excites you the most about this position and this company?

I am excited about the opportunity to work with a larger group of Members and expand my offerings. The possibilities are endless!

What is your favorite thing about working for Senior Living Communities?

The team members and Members are the best part.  As a Team Member, your family instantly grows, and you have the opportunity to learn so much and give so much.

Describe a time that a Member had a positive impact on your day?

A Member shared with me that my visit was the highlight of her day; she couldn’t wait for me to come by and see her.  I have realized over the years with the company that we are so very fortunate to be able to serve so many people.  What a gift they are to us.

Have you utilized the Elevate program? If not, do you know someone who has?

I have not; I do know a few people who have and what a wonderful journey and mentorship program it is.

How have you grown professionally and personally since joining the Team?

Personally, I have learned patience and I am more aware of what is important in life; spending your day helping improve the quality of life of others makes you shift your perspective a bit. Professionally, I have learned so much about leadership, communication and building on that, immersing myself into teamwork, striving for excellence, the list goes on.  I have grown so much in the 3 ½ years I have been with the company.

What about your position allows you to pursue what makes you feel the most passionate in life?

The opportunity to work with people and make a difference in their lives is so fulfilling.  Serving others, going the extra mile to have an impact on others is so rewarding. When I say fulfilling, my heart is overflowing when I leave every day because I have helped so many people, in different areas. If I helped put batteries in a remote control, if I fixed someone’s hair, if I dressed up in a silly costume and danced down the hall – whatever it is, it always means so much to our Members.

When it comes to your programming, what is the motivation behind specific activities, events, programs that you do with your Members?

The motivation has always been and will continue to be, know your Member.  Know who they are, where they came from, what their fears are, what their wildest dreams are, know their family.  Know your Member.

Your community has a monthly social event called a Signature Experience, what is your favorite part of planning, executing, and experience itself?

Our Signature Experiences are so fun! The planning portion is wonderful because we have a team of multiple departments that contribute to the day’s experience. Everyone has different ideas and creative ways they see an event playing out. The meeting of the minds is where it all begins and then we build from there.  We research, chat with our families, chat with peers and others to get input on how we can make it spectacular.  From the decorations to the lighting to the food and how it is presented – it is all thought out in detail.  I think the best part is looking at the dining room in the evening right before the Members come in for dinner.  It is like magic.  Everything is in place; the lighting is perfect. The show is ready to begin.  And then seeing their faces light up when they walk in. There are no words to describe their awe.  It is almost like seeing a child’s face on Christmas morning.  It is the best!

A common misconception is that senior living social activities are all bingo all the time. How do you break that stereotype?

I tell people to just check our social media posts! There is very little bingo because we want to engage the Members. We want to stimulate their minds!  We want to elevate our programming every day, so it does not get stagnant.  We want them to wonder, “what are they going to do today?”

How do you incorporate your Member’s feedback, personal lives, preferences, etc into your daily programming?

Personally knowing your Members is so important for programming. Each Member is different, and they all have different interests.  Finding the connections helps me program for many and pushes the envelope on what we can do!

Fun Fact: What are a few of your favorite hobbies? What is something many people don’t know about you?

I love to cook, like all the time.  I cook dinner for my husband every night after work.  Many would say that is a lot of work. It is relaxing for me, and we love to eat!  My husband and I like to go target shooting if we find a weekend with some down time.  We have a little friendly competition and I usually win. It also helps relieve stress!

How has COVID-19 impacted your programming? Why are activities important during this time?

COVID-19 has impacted our programming completely, but in a lot of ways, I think for good. We are spending more one on one time with our Members.  We are spending more time in small groups and building those bonds with Members who were not as involved with activities prior.  Overall I think our engagement and participation has increased, and I think will continue as we slowly open our communities back up.