Lisa Kinsella has been working with seniors since 1987, and she's seen the nature and quality of care and assisted living evolve in that time. Now as the executive director at Meadow Ridge , nestled in Redding on a hill overlooking Weston's Devil's Den Preserve, she's using decades of experience to help meet the needs of senior citizens.
The senior of today is intelligent, motivated and really engaged in life, Kinsella says inside her office at Meadow Ridge, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary. Outside, a shuttle picks up residents heading off for daily activities. A nearby courtyard is filled with others, enjoying coffee and food.
Meadow Ridge draws residents primarily from Fairfield County, who lived in the region or are here now because their children are close. Many tenants hold regular jobs and commute to and from work. Others are spending their retirement enjoying golf and tennis.
All of those lifestyles are important to Kinsella. She wants Meadow Ridge to be a community filled with vibrant people. The average age might push north of 78, but she says that isn't a reason for people to stop enjoying life. Today's seniors are healthier and more energetic, and she wants Meadow Ridge to accommodate their lifestyles.
Kinsella says there are fringe benefits to living in a relatively self-contained community such as Meadow Ridge that don't show up in the flier of weekly events. When we had all those storms last winter, this was a really nice place to be, she says.
Despite an emphasis on active lifestyles, it would be folly to presume seniors don't sometimes need medical attention. Kinsella said a number of assisted living services are available, from a little in-apartment aid to a community health center with long-term care if required.
To me it's like a village. You meet new people and form social groups, Kinsella says.
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