Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Quality of life
[ encyclopedia definition:
“Quality of life is the degree of well-being felt by an individual or group of people. Unlike standard of living, quality of life is not a tangible concept, and therefore cannot be measured directly.”]
We make many decisions to improve or maintain our quality of life. We exercise, eat right and go to the doctor to stay healthy. We do crossword puzzles, have spirited conversations, and expose ourselves to beauty in nature and art to stay sharp. We strengthen our connections to family and friends, give back to our communities, and do the things we love to stay engaged.
Another decision many older adults make to maintain their quality of life, sometimes with fierce determinations, is to stay in the family home. Having our own personal space gives us freedom and control over the basics of day-to-day life - when we eat, when we sleep, what we do. One of the hardest conversations a caregiver may every have to have with an older adult might revolve around needing more help than living in that home can afford.
With some creativity, however, changes in living arrangements can add to quality of life. Staying on the property in another more suitable residence in the rear could suffice for some. For others, having family members move in with them after renovating the home to be more age-friendly could be an answer. A move to an adult child‘s home if they have their own living quarters might work for some. This again could be a small cottage in the garden. As long as freedom, independence and control over one‘s life are respected, a move from a beloved home can be seen as a change for the good!
posted by Custom Blogs @ 10:23 AM
Monday, July 7, 2008
Why Sidekick Believes in Universal Design
At Sidekick Homes all of our models are designed following the principals of Universal Design. That means:
- designing homes that are easier to live in and more comfortable to use for all people regardless of physical stature, strength, age, or physical mobility;
- gently sloping walks or ramps, free of steps, lead up to the entry door;
- there are no steps within a home, except for stairs to a second floor;
- elevators are provided in all two-story homes;
- doors and hallways are wide, and there is room to move freely throughout the home;
- lever door handles, on all doors, are easier to use than knobs;
- bathrooms are large to allow the full use by those who require a wheelchair or other mobility aid;
- at least two windows in each home open with an easy to use casement crank or are power operated;
- light switches and electrical outlets are in easier to reach location;
- kitchens have: easy to access lower storage cabinets, few or no high wall cabinets, and pantries where space allows.
Why do we believe this is important? Because no matter who lives in our homes, we want them to feel comfortable and competent in their home. We want them to be able to use the kitchens and bathrooms with ease, to be able to move easily from room to room, and for light switches and outlets never to be out of reach. We want our homes to be places where people feel they are in control of their surrounds and not the other way around.