Staff generosity finds the net

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Ken Cleverdon
Ken Cleverdon

Never mind the frigid winters in Ontario, staff members at Streamway Villa in the town of Coburg know how to bring warmth to their residents.

Take, for example, registered practical nurse Sarah Wilson. Knowing that 85-year-old resident Ken Cleverdon (photo) had not been to a hockey game in many years, she surprised the former player with a ticket to join her and her family rinkside. They watched the Toronto Marlies, an affiliate of Cleverdon's beloved Toronto Maple Leafs, beat the Hamilton Bulldogs 3-1 in a preseason American Hockey League game. Cleverdon received a tour of the new 18,000-seat arena in Coburg, reveled in speaking with other fans and even had a photograph taken with the team's cheerleading squad.

Just 3 years old when he was stricken with polio, Cleverdon has lived with a weakened leg but it never stopped him from playing the game he loves. And Wilson made possible a grand return to see it live.

 “Everyone on our staff does things like that,” says Streamway Life Enrichment Coordinator Christina Verleysen proudly. “They go above and beyond. If they're not working, they come in.”

Last month, staff at the 59-bed skilled care facility created a “wish box” program. At least one resident's submitted wish will be brought to fruition each month. “For many residents, this is their last stage of life,” Verleysen reasons. “And if we don't do it, who is?”



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