Staff at Toronto Rehab, Bickle Centre, last week got together to celebrate Lettucefest, an annual event marking the first harvest from GROW – Garden Rehab on Wheels. (Photo: UHN)

Celebrating "Lettucefest" at Toronto Rehab, Bickle Centre

Staff at Toronto Rehab, Bickle Centre came out during their lunch break last week to try a variety of leafy greens picked from GROW – Garden Rehab on Wheels – as part of the annual first harvest celebration known as Lettucefest.

GROW was started in 2016 to offer a therapeutic space for the Bickle community. Various crops such as lettuce, tomatoes, herbs, and more are planted each year at the beginning of June. When crops are ready, staff are offered a taste.

Susan Currie, an occupational therapist at Bickle and the Coordinator of GROW, is looking forward to hosting more potlucks throughout the summer.

Different leafy greens were picked that included kale, green leaf romaine and red romaine. Staff participating were asked to bring their favourite toppings which included cherry tomatoes, cheeses, nuts, roasted beets and more.

"Our garden potlucks are always the highlight of the year," Susan says. "It is not only a wonderful time for staff to come together and connect but it is also a great opportunity to enjoy all that the garden has to offer."

Whether staff and patients want to feel the plants as a sensory activity or simply want some fresh air, GROW has offered a welcoming place for staff and patients and some wonderful lunches!

"Bathing spaces for people with dementia need to be designed so that that they can be supported to bathe safely and in a way that minimizes anxiety and protects their dignity," says Dr. Andrea Iaboni, a scientist at UHN's KITE Research Institute. (Photo: UHN)

UHN researcher receives funding to help people living with dementia to bathe safely

Dr. Andrea Iaboni, a scientist at UHN's KITE Research Institute, has received funding from The Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) at Baycrest to support a project that seeks to develop guidelines and an evaluation framework for bathroom design in residential dementia care settings.

Dr. Iaboni will receive $46,000 in funding to create guidelines for the design and evaluation of bathroom renovations on the Specialized Dementia Unit at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute (TRI-SDU). It will also be shared with organizations that design long-term care homes.

Dr. Iaboni's project is one of 40 initiatives aimed at improving the quality of life for older adults, people living with dementia, and caregivers financially supported by CABHI's Spark Program.

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