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Wednesday, December 19, 2018
Our StoriesMemento Boxes

Memento Boxes

Memento boxes keep precious memories alive

Seniors at Crowsnest Pass Health Centre can reminisce easier thanks to personalized display cabinets.

Story by Kerry Robins

A walk down memory lane with someone we love adds a bit of sunshine to any day.  

“It’s really nice to provide our seniors with a means to think back on their lives and relive special moments with family” — Becky Rinaldi, Chair of the Crowsnest Pass Health Foundation

But when memory fails, it’s a gift to have loving reminders nearby to spark the imagination and start conversations.

This is exactly why the continuing care area of the Crowsnest Pass Health Centre is installing memory boxes along the hallways, one for each resident’s room.

The wall-mounted display cases — about the size of a medicine cabinet — show off items and mementoes that matter to the resident, to bring alive important moments and memories from their lives.

“The boxes are really important for our residents and families because they can help ignite memories and start a wonderful conversation reminiscing,” says Diane Nummi, unit manager of continuing care at the health centre.

Thanks to funding from the Crowsnest Pass Health Foundation, 18 boxes are already installed in the dementia and special care unit, at a cost of $183 apiece.

Nummi says she’s pleased with this special initiative.

“Our goal is to install a box outside each resident’s door by the end of the year,” she says. “They provide context and an engaging way for staff to get to know their residents personally.”

There are 53 residents currently living in continuing care; they or their families can personalize their boxes as they wish.

While each box is locked to safeguard the keepsakes, the glass door allows passersby to see the treasures within.

Becky Rinaldi, Chair of the Crowsnest Pass Health Foundation, says the boxes are a touching sentiment for continuing care residents.

“It’s really nice to provide our seniors with a means to think back on their lives and relive special moments with family,” she says. “It may seem small, but the rewards are huge. I’m thrilled to be part of this important project.”

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