At nursing care facilities, the holiday season is typically a time for fun and special activities. It is especially difficult to promote this type of cheerful atmosphere during COVID when many residents are quarantined away from their families.
As a CNA you are often one of the only people seeing residents on a daily basis. Therefore, there can be added pressure to supply an extra dose of joy this year. Here are four ideas on how to safely celebrate the holidays in a nursing facility this year.
Organize a Secret Santa giving event for the residents! Assign them to another resident to exchange gifts and letters to each other.
A Movie Marathon
It’s A Wonderful Life, A Christmas Carol, The Polar Express — they’re all holiday classics! Formulate a line-up of holiday movies that the residents will enjoy and host a movie marathon. Make sure to space out residents at least 6 feet apart. Serve hot cocoa, popcorn, and cookies.
Holiday Cookie Decorating Contest
Plan a holiday cookie decoration competition for residents! It’ll be fun to see the decorations they come up with.
Have each resident sign up for separate time in the kitchen so that they aren’t decorating their cookies at the same time. Then have them set out their cookie with a number next to it.
Once all the cookies have been decorated, have the residents go around and vote for which cookie they like the best and they aren’t allowed to vote for their own cookie. The cookie with the most votes wins!
This competition could also be done with gingerbread houses.
Christmas Lights Tour
If the facility has a bus, van, or any other transportation service, allow participating residents to go on a tour around the neighborhood to see all of the decorated houses and streets.
Try out these fun ideas to ensure the residents have a fun time while also staying safe during the pandemic. Also remember that not every resident has the holiday spirit, so try not to push the activities on them.