At the home office, finding ways to reach our patients and residents, can be a little difficult. For the most part, the corporate staff doesn’t have the opportunity to interact with patient and residents or their families directly. However, the Clinical Services Department came up with an interesting way for corporate staff to connect with these individuals.“We were working on the cornerstone Compassion and thought that the development of ‘Reminiscing Kits’ would be a great way to show our facilities how much we care about their work and give families a new way to engage patients and residents who have memory impairments,” says Janet Watton”, CTRS, Director of Quality Life Services. The Reminiscing Kits are plastic file boxes that are filled with items related to a particular theme. For instance, if the theme was baseball, the items in the box might be a baseball glove, a small bat, some trading cards, peanuts, a program, photos of baseball players, etc.“We decided to give each department at home office a file box to fill and asked them to each put together a box that would be sent to one of our facilities. When families come to visit their loved ones, sometimes it is hard to generate conversation. The Reminiscing Kits are a good way to stimulate memories from the past. Also, these kits work well when the Activity Director’s use them in a group setting. We were thrilled with the response we got and instead of sending just one kit per department, many departments made up multiple kits. It was wonderful!” exclaims Janet.The Clinical Services Department received an overwhelming response to their request and instead of sending out 15 boxes, they sent 31 boxes to the facilities. “This is definitely something that the facility staff and Area/Regional staff can develop further by getting their families and staff involved in creating more kits. The items can be donated, picked up a thrift stores or created by printing information off the internet. They are inexpensive to make. Each department took great pride in their kits and couldn’t wait to show them off. Due to the positive response to this project, I think we will continue to look for creative ways to help out our facilities” says Janet.Families check the boxes out when they come to visit or they can be used as part of the activities program. Some of the themes for the kits included: cars, gardening, holidays, babies, cooking, sports and games, to name a few. This was a great way for the home office to demonstrate its commitment to our patients and residents and show them What Matters Most!