I have a ton of respect and appreciation for this whole company, which puts a lot of skilled people on its team in dealing with people who have dementia. They make it a top priority for residents to keep living and being part of life"”and there are true teeth to their approach.
Loren Shook, Silverado's president and CEO and Steve Winner, its senior vice president, have written a great book titled The Silverado Story: A Memory-Care Culture Where Love Is Greater Than Fear, that explains the philosophy put into practice in the facility. It's all driven by making life good for people with dementia"”in understanding how to navigate and work with them so that the first line of action is not always pharmacology.
In this rather novel approach, they look first at a resident's interests. Before placing one particular resident, for example, there were several hours of conversation about what she could do to feel useful and needed. Management came up with the idea of putting this potential resident in charge of the facility's consignment shop"”a "˜enterprise' that would be invented just for her.
The staff and administration have been given creative license by their leadership to be creative in providing a safe and engaging place to live. The décor is not remarkable, for example, but when they took over the property, which features a lot of outdoor space, they put a tasteful barrier fence along the perimeter for safety. There's a pergola and lovely garden and grounds that give residents there the license to walk outside safely and have a sense of the campus beyond their own four walls.
Management in assisted living facilities can change quickly and frequently. It's always a good idea to check in with the Executive Director, key managers and other care providers to establish a rapport and a comfortable working relationship if you plan to have a loved one living there.
Silverado Senior Living is more expensive than many assisted living places, but the philosophy of care there helps create peace of mind that they can effectively work with residents with mild to severe memory impairment.