By Gary Hibbs
The creation of community is at the heart of our mission statement here at Riderwood. The word “community” derives from the Old French comuneté, which comes from the Latin communitas “community,” “public spirit” (from Latin communis, “shared in common”). This creativity is an ongoing process, and the community changes as we come together with new ideas about programs and the related space utilization. And our space is growing and changing every year … just look around!
I remember over twenty years ago, when our “wellness” programs within Erickson communities consisted of a space, a virtually empty “exercise” room, wherein residents could donate their used stationary bikes and put them in the room for other residents to use. How far we have come from those days!
Today, we have a wellness staff that coordinates with a resident and develops a plan of fitness in conjunction with a physician. And, we are still improving the physical plant capacity and related equipment with a state-of-the-art Wellness building to be delivered in May, 2020, the very month we celebrate our 20th anniversary! It is especially exciting as this coincides with a recent commitment of Jim Davis, the owner of Erickson Living, to give $10 million over the next five years to Erickson communities. The money is to be utilized for wellness initiatives that directly impact the wellness of community residents and support variety, diversity, and inclusion in these programs while demonstrating good stewardship of the resident funds in the process.
Here’s the point: We keep evolving and getting better. And our programs, in this instance wellness programs, are driven by the needs and wants of our residents. In fact, I am writing this just after having a meeting with two residents who have ideas about our tennis courts and their utilization. The courts are used for pickleball and also support a new basketball space (a resident idea!) as well as tennis. And, right near the tennis courts we have a new net (another resident idea!) so that golfers can practice their driving skills.
We won’t stop changing! Thanks for embracing it. We are always looking to hear your ideas. Keep them coming. Have a nice August!