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Current update on volunteer status, changes at Trinity Homes

My name is Shelly Swearson and I am new to the “Senior Scene.” I am however, not new to the “senior scene” or new to Minot. I have been working in health care for 32 years and 30 of theose years have been at Trinity Homes in Minot. I have been the director of Social Services at Trinity Homes for 22 of those years and last spring I also became the director of Activities and supervise the Transport Aides and the Trinity Homes Beauty Shop. The most challenging thing I have faced in my 32 years working in health care has been the last two years during this pandemic. To watch the residents go through those first several months with no visitors, and being unable to leave their room was heartbreaking. To see the residents thrive today, through all of the changes in rules and regulations, is amazing.

Now that we are trying to find a “new normal” at Trinity Homes, it has been a challenge to get residents to participate in activities. Many new residents don’t know what it was like pre-COVID when there were many activities going on. We have always had a long list of talented volunteers in the community coming and going with their musical instruments, dancing shoes, school kids doing crafts with our residents, service members from Minot Air Force Base doing projects with the residents, church circle groups, young adults that came in from the Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch, and the list goes on.

Unfortunately, at this time we still can’t have volunteers coming in and out of the building, but are looking forward to spring and summer when the residents can go out to them. Last summer the residents made several trips to the zoo, the fair, they had a carnival outside, a car show, special music entertainment, and made trips to the air museum. This summer can only be better than last and hopefully some day we will get some of the same volunteers back that the residents have missed so much.

Families can come and go again as they wish and it has been wonderful seeing people, other than staff, roaming our halls. Visitors can contact Social Services at Trinity Homes to get an update on any changes in our visitation status. Through it all, and all the changes in regulations and staffing issues, my heart continues to be with every resident and family that have ever roamed these halls over the last 30 years. I couldn’t ask for a better place to work and I couldn’t be prouder of the staff who have stuck through these challenges to try to make it better for our residents.

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