10 Minutes Is All It Takes!

Seniors Visit on a Cool & Rainy Day

We’ve all woken up on the wrong side of the bed, right? Well maybe all we needed was a trip to the farm to make everything better.

During the most recent Seniors Field Trip, two members of the Adult Day Center of Somerset County were a little grumpy when they walked into the barn. The day was cool and rainy, and the barn felt a bit dark and clammy. Five out of the seven members walked right in with smiles from ear to ear eager to meet the three ponies waiting to be groomed. The two others, a first-timer and a previous attendee, were NOT quite as excited.

With hands firmly in her pockets and a face to match her attitude, return visitor “Jane” entered the barn and walked back and forth refusing to help get the ponies clean. A long 10 minutes later, her face started to soften and her hands came out from her pockets. That’s all it took for the closest pony to stretch its neck out to investigate. With that small gesture the woman smiled and reached out to pet the pony. After that she picked up a brush and went to work brushing the dirt off her pony.

The other senior who had never been to the farm, walked into the barn and refused to touch a single pony. He clearly stated he was not going to clean any horse and did not want to pet one either. After 10 minutes of watching the others petting and grooming he agreed to take a brush and went to work. He then moved onto the next horse and gently brushed the horse’s face and neck until the horse fell asleep.

Coming to Mane Stream for a few hours gives seniors with dementia a purpose and focus. They take care of someone else instead of always being taken care of. Maybe that means doing something they never tried before. Maybe the experience brings back memories from their childhood. Whatever it is, they share their experience with the staff and volunteers either verbally or through their smiles.

Each trip ends with the participants enjoying a quick lunch in the reception area. This time a couple of the seniors gladly offered to sweep up the whole room, saying they wanted to help and be of some use. Don’t we all want that?!

Mane Stream is proud to provide a place for these seniors and we look forward to their monthly trips. SHARE the news!