Welcome home


The Maritime Oddfellows Home in Pictou has received a makeover recently that has the residents feeling more at home in the facility than ever before.

Each one of the residents at the home has received a new door wrap over the past month or so that makes the doors of their room look like the front door of a house.

The idea came from when a few of the home’s staff had seen the same thing done at homes in Europe to give the space a more personal feel.

“We want to create a more home-like environment for the residents,” said Rhonda Mason, RN director of care. She added that this is one of the goals the home is working toward to make life better for its residents. After contacting some of the European places that have had the project on the go for a while, the Odd Fellows Home decided to go with a local company instead.

“We kind of had some concepts of what we wanted,” said Mason.

They were looking for cheerful, bright colours that were non-gender specific and inviting looking. Initially, a tester door was ordered from a company to see what the idea would look like. It was after this that the home partnered with Advocate Printing and ordered 16 wraps for doors in the dementia wing of the home. The doors became such a hit and were favourably priced so the home ended up ordering enough door wraps for all 47 resident doors in the facility.

“They love their doors,” said Mason. “They like the fact that it feels more like home.”

She added that some of the residents were able to have the option to pick their own doors from a number of designs, allowing them to have a sense of ownership and satisfaction with their little home.

“I think they’re awesome, it cheers up the place,” said Alice Marie West, daughter of Florence Hughes, a resident in the facility. “It probably helps the residents find their rooms, too,” she said.

“I like it,” added Hughes about her bright red door with a door knocker printed on it. She added that she enjoys the colour and it helps her recognize which door is hers.

“I think they’re pretty,” smiled Helen Patterson, another resident of the home. “I like the colours, it brightens up the hall.”

Mason also added that after the door wraps got the partnership with Advocate going, they were also able to work out a couple new things for the residents with their in-house mail service. Once a month Advocate now also sends a mix of print products they produce such as newspapers and magazines to the home for some extra reading material for the seniors. A ghostwriter program was also created that sees people from Advocate write the residents once a month, addressing them by name, and chatting about all kinds of things like the weather and other happenings.

Mason added that both of the new programs have really helped the residents feel that much more at home in the facility by adding a little personal touch.

Jake Williamson sits in front of his door, one of the Advocate Printing door wraps at the Pictou Maritime Oddfellows home. The door wraps help the rooms and hallways of the home feel more personal and inviting for residents. (Brimicombe photo)