Today we share a bit about why Jenny Teigen chooses to serve older adults at SummerWood of Plymouth. As a Housing Counselor, Jenny meets with families and individuals as they consider senior living options and helps them determine where they can live their best lives in their ‘encore years.’
Jenny goes back to her college experience as she reflects on her introduction to the ministry of serving older adults:
“In college, I had a minor in gerontology. I didn’t know when I selected it that serving older adults would become my calling, but I loved it so much that I would later obtain a master’s degree in gerontology.
Some of the most impactful experiences I had were during the times I volunteered as a companion visitor to older adults. It was a requirement to fulfill a certain number of volunteer hours for my minor, but it had meaning far beyond that and I truly enjoyed it.
Eloise was one of the people I had the opportunity to meet. Sometimes we went shopping or out to eat to get her favorite Arby’s roast beef sandwich, but the most impactful activity was in the simple art of conversation together.
It was truly about life’s simple pleasures, the things that we often take for granted; like going on walks outside or getting in our cars to drive wherever we wish to go. Eloise did not have many connections in her community and there was not a solid public transportation system in her area. As a result, she would stay at home alone most of the time. This broke my heart.
The thing that stuck out the most to me about the people I visited was the loneliness I perceived. Without social interaction or taking part in activities we are passionate about, we are often left feeling isolated and without purpose.
As a Housing Counselor, I have the opportunity to connect people with welcoming communities and engaging things to do. This fuels ‘My Why’ which is to help people like Eloise to connect with their community and reignite their sense of passion and purpose in life!”