June 24 was the first church service inside Imperial Manor and Parkview-Heights using the new protection barrier. Pastor David Kahle leads a church service from behind the single-access barrier for residents.
Becky Kuntzelman | Johnson Publications
Resident Donnabeth Ferrel celebrated her 96th birthday with family on Friday utilizing the new barrier-safe space. Activities Director/CNA Billie Baros, stands behind her. In back, behind the barrier are, from left, Ferrel’s daughter Vicky Brown, grandson Troy Brown, son-in-law Jim Brown and Administrator Eric Haider.
With some ingenuity, church services resume at Manor, Parkview-Heights
The Imperial Manor and Parkview-Heights residents have been enduring a church-service drought since COVID-19 warranted a shutdown of gatherings.
Administrator Eric Haider said the people really missed the church services.
Last week, he announced that services are back—observing all required safety protocols, of course.
Church services, family visitations and family/resident dining were suspended until the situation improved enough to not put residents and staff at risk, he said.
Haider came up with an idea following a conversation with Pastor David Kahle of Zion Lutheran Church.
Pastor Kahle commented he would prefer that residents could see pastors in a more “live” situation during services rather than having to perform services outside a window.
With the help of the maintenance and housekeeping staff, they came up with a way to place a barrier in an open section of Parkview that would allow visitors and pastors to enter through a rear outside door into a secure space, said Haider.
This space is isolated by a clear plastic “wall” dividing an open area where chairs are placed six feet apart for residents to attend a church service and feel more interactive yet still remain safe, he said.
Haider, with help from some other staff members, decorated the isolated space for pastors that make it appear more church-like, Haider said.
“The pastors can conduct a church service and speak to the residents through a clear barrier that is hardly detectable,” he said.
This same set-up will get multiple uses, although church services are the main reason for it, he said.
Family members can now use the same separated space to visit residents and still maintain safety protocol.
“Families want to participate in activities with our residents. This setup can provide a little more freedom to do it safely,” he said.
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