© Eric McCarthy/Journal Pioneer
They’ve served their communities as teachers, labourers, farmers, seamstresses, parents, fishers, cashiers and business units, and now they are getting set to live out their final years in the new Maplewood Manor.
Community members got the chance Friday to get a sneak peak at what their relatives and neighbours will be moving into on Nov. 9.
The new manor provides many sharp contrasts to the facility residents and staff will soon vacate. Built in 1967, the old manor is on two levels. Concrete steps and a concrete ramp lead to the main entrance. Corridors are narrow. Many residents have to share their rooms, and rooms have to share bathrooms.
The building might have been suitable in its early days, but needs and standards change. It served long enough.
Residents deserve better and they get that in the new manor. There’s a bright, homey feel to their new home.
Right from the no-step entrance, the building is very accessible and it has hard-surface flooring throughout. There’s plenty of natural light to brighten the days. Residents live in “houses” – 12 single rooms to a house, two houses to a neighbourhood. There is a neighbourhood at each end of the building and support services, including a large multi-purpose room for church services, entertainment and other gatherings, are in the middle.
While there is no getting away from the fact that a move to a manor is one of the last moves individuals will make on this earth, it is good to know that they are moving into a well-designed, bright and cheerful environment. They deserve the best.
If there is a downside to this new manor it is that it can only accommodate 48 residents. That’s how many the old manor can accommodate.
With an aging population, the number of people requiring long-term care is likely to increase for the foreseeable future. Offsetting that likelihood, though, are the 14 additional long term care beds that are due to open in O’Leary’s Margaret Stewart-Ellis long-term care unit next April .
That will bring the number of long-term care beds in O’Leary to 39.
Certainly, when government looks at further increasing the number of long-term care beds in West Prince, it will have to consider Tignish’s demands for a similar facility.