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Activity Professionals Week


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Well - we celebrated this week at our facility by having our building full of Dept of Health Surveyors! ;-) We survived the week - No activity-related deficiencies.... I'm treating my staff to pizza tomorrow for lunch & have made them homemade cards to show them my appreciation for all their hard work. Sadly, d/t our visitors this week, the rest of the facility has sort of forgotten! :oops:


We celebrated by having balloons with the individual names of our Activities Staff,and a Big sign- Recognition of the Activity Department and had a fine dining set up with white table cloths, crystal glasses, beautiful red napkin folds, sparkling non-alcoholic wine, in our Activity Room with a Pot luck Dinner. Each of us received a Thank you card-- We were delighted and it was a good treat...

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I am kind of like the person in the quote in the previous post. Celebrating with a builing full of surveyors, yippee! I guess the party will have to wait. Only thing is, I'll have to celebrate by myself because my assistant is going back to the floor as a CNA on Monday. Oh well, I guess thats how it goes sometimes. Happy Activity Professionals Week to everyone!!!!

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  • 10 months later...
Hi All,

Just wondering if anyone is thinking about plans for National Activity Professional Week? National Activity Professional's Week is

January 23-28, 2005.

The theme is a Historic Past and a Promising Future.

I would love to hear what everyone is doin'.....

Have fun! Gina ;-)

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Hello Everyone!

In honor of Activity Professionals Week also known as (NAP) they are holding a conference. The conference has been pre-approved with the National Certification Council for Activity Professionals (NCCAP) It is 13hrs of training and if anyone if interested contact Michelle Nolta, at www.rec-therapy.com

Good Luck


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Hello Everyone!

In honor of Activity Professionals Week also known as (NAP) they are holding a conference. The conference has been pre-approved with the National Certification Council for Activity Professionals (NCCAP) It is 13hrs of training and if anyone if interested contact Michelle Nolta, at www.rec-therapy.com

Good Luck


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  • 2 weeks later...

I do hate to toot my own horn, and I already am tired from planning too many parties in Dec and gearing up for Valentine King and Queen, which leads into Easter/St. Patricks, then right into Volunteer and the NNHweek! (I'm not a party person, I'm more into individualized recreation therapy. Last week survey was in and the whole year was pretty shaken up-yes, I got a tag on small groups and 1:1s, which, ironically, is what my preferred calling is, but hard to be everything to everyone. Spending too much time being a gopher and not enough doing these neat programming ideas I have...I hung the poster and gave my assistant a shirt, plus took her out-but only the therapy dept. noticed it. I make sure my SSD gets noticed during her week as she also tends to go unrecognized-and activities is expected to have the "residents" (read one resident and I re-do it to be nice and finish the rest) for Nursing or cna week. I agree with the NNHWeek-that's the one time someone actually looks our way, and I think that's just because the administration is expected to show some appreciation or involvement, so it might trickle down some. Here's hoping for a better year, good surveys, and more involvement from those who don't realize how vital you are to your residents and the staff! Happy 2009!

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We in Nova Scotia Canada are called Recreation not Activities. You could change the word recreation to activities. I found these things in my travels. We celebrate our week the first full week of February. Happy New Year! :)


Recreation: More Than Just Bingo

*Recreation: The Other Best Medicine

*Therapeutic Recreation: Re-Creating, Mind, Body and Spirit


Host a breakfast, luncheon, or dinner for the Recreation Department

*Bring Recreation Staff out for a meal

*Have a surprise party

*Have a Guess Who Baby Picture Contest

*Have a Who’s Who in the Recreation Dept. Contest

*Have a Department Heads Facilitate Recreation Day

*Have a “Best Theme Event Contest”. Invite staff, residents, and family to offer ideas for theme events. The contestants must give ideas for decorations, food, costumes/apparel, music, etc. Winner receives a prize and the chance to plan/facilitate the event.

*Have residents vote and give awards or certificates for various categories such as:

*Most Creative Recreation Professional

*Most Energetic Recreation Professional

*Most Compassionate Recreation Professional

*Recreation Professional Who Smiles the Most

*Funniest Recreation Professional


Many long-term care staff, family members, visitors, and even residents, lack a thorough knowledge of the importance and benefits of programs in a health-care environment. Therefore it is extremely important for the Recreation Department to market, promote, and educate others. Hosting an annual “Recreation Fair” is a great way to promote the Recreation Department, and boost staff morale, teamwork, and have fun.

• Commit to hosting the Recreation Fair each year during NSRPH Week.

• Months in advance, set up a Recreation Fair committee. The committee should be made up of Recreation personnel and anyone else that may wish to assist such as Volunteers, Residents, Marketing Department, etc.

• Begin advertising at least a month prior. Advertising may include the facility or corporate newsletter, flyers, posters, send emails, etc. Make sure that all management is aware of the upcoming fair.

• Discuss the possibility of it becoming a Mandatory In-service for all facility staff. Host the event in the largest room available. The more space, the better.

• Create a variety of booths such as: Physical Games and Exercise, Sensory Stimulation, Music, Cognitive Activities, Creative Activities, Adapting Activities, Committees, Leisure Education, etc. Be sure to have an “Interdisciplinary Approach to Quality of Life” booth that demonstrates the CMS Activity Guidance to Surveyors. “

• Each booth may have printed materials, a storyboard explaining the purpose, benefits, etc., sample equipment, and a game or contest.

• Have a “Who’s Who” in the Recreation Department Contest.

• Hand out raffle tickets for each contest, game or activity to those who participate. Have a variety raffle prizes such as mugs, t-shirts, pens, etc.

• Make sure that all participants sign in at the door. Download FREE Sign in Sheet.

• Schedule the event to include as many shifts as possible such as 10:00am-5:00pm. You should even do a smaller one for the 11pm-7am shift if it becomes a mandatory facility in-service.

• Various storyboard materials.



Physical Games and Exercise Basketball, Bowling, Toss games (create a physical impairment such as blindfolding the participant) Display a variety of adapted physical games such as toss games, basketball, bowling, golf, etc, and exercise equipment such as scarves, ribbons, therabands, parachute, etc.

Music Karaoke Contest or Name That Tune Karaoke Machine, sample music

Cognitive Activities Trivia Contest, Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune Display a variety of trivia books, discussion materials, word games, etc.

Creative Activities Craft project, gardening project, etc Display various craft supplies and adapted equipment

Parlour Games Bingo, Horseracing, Black Jack Display various bingo cards, adapted chips, card shuffler, and large print playing cards. Pokeno, Horseracing, etc.

Sensory Stimulation Give a hand massage, have participants guess various aromas Display multi-sensory equipment such as bubble towers, projectors, light sprays, aroma therapy, various tactile equipment, etc. Flaghouse provides a free SNOEZELEN CD that can be played.

Leisure Education Play Leisure Bingo, have participants fill out a self-leisure assessment Have variety of Leisure education materials such as a list of all the activities the Activity Department offers and the benefits of the activities or create an “Introduction to the Activity Department” Manual” that describes the role of the Activity Department and the various programs offered.

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Again just change recreation to activities


Recreation is the foundation of care, and every event, encounter,

or exchange with an individual is an activity’’ .


"People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did,

but they will never forget how you made them feel...’’

- anonymous

"The word recreation really is a very beautiful word. It is defined in the dictionary as

the process of giving new life to something, of refreshing something,

or restoring something. This something, of course, is the whole person.

- Hans Geba


Recreation is an essential service for Health and Wellness.

• Functional Intervention:

to maintain and/or improve functional abilities, enhance well-being and facilitate independence.

• Leisure education:

to teach or enhance recreation skills and attitudes that can be used throughout life.

• Recreation Participation:

to promote health and growth

Recreation services and leisure experiences help people with physical, cognitive, social or emotional limitations make the most of their lives.


Recreation Is…

• Empowering

• Dynamic

• Treatment, Education & Purposeful Recreation

• Fun

• For People with Unique Leisure Needs

• About Quality of Life

• Facilitating Leisure Lifestyles

• Practiced by Recreation Professionals

• About Mind, Body, and Spirit

• Important to Know About

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This is an activity to share with all members of the Recreation/Activity Department (staff as well as volunteers). Using 12 large file cards, prepare with the comments and items indicated below, then place in a basket. Ask staff members or volunteers to pull out a card, read the comments, and reflect on its message.


Card #1: Attach to envelope - “This envelope reminds, us we must remain open to residents’ wished as well as the love they are willing to share.”


Card #2: Attached to any type of sticky backed label - “These labels caution us to remain label-free when working with residents and staff.”


Card #3: Attach to a heart-shaped pencil sharpener - “this heart pencil sharpener reminds us we need a big heart to do this job. Sometimes we need to sharpen our job skills.”


Card #4: Attach to a pencil gripper - “This pencil gripper helps us to remember that nothing is so overwhelming we can not get a grip on it!”


Card #5: Attach to any length ruler - “This ruler reminds us that we grew one inch at a time as a child. In activities, we grow a little each day, facing new challenges and new responsibilities.”


Card #6: Attach to a spring-type clip - “This clip reminds us we need to hang on to some form of faith to give meaning to work and home in general to give meaning to life.”


Card #7: Attach to a clothespin - “This clothespin reminds us not to get hung up on one idea, one way of presenting an activity, one resident, one volunteer, or one employee.”


Card #8: Attach to a ping pong ball - “this ping pong ball reminds us to move and speak slowly with the resident. No bouncing off of walls or rattling on so quickly.”


Card #9: Attach to a golf ball ‘ “this golf ball reminds us that the minute we enter into our place of work, we are swinging into the residents’ homes for a hole in one day.”


Card #10: Attach to any type of a hook (type to hang cups on) - “This hook is to hope you are hooked on your job!”


Card #11: Attach to a small paper clip -“This clip is small, but it reminds us even the smallest thing, one word said with love, one hand shake, one hug, one pat on the back is vital and very important to the residents.”


Card #12: Attach to a file card of any size - “This card reminds us of the importance of proper record keeping, not only to help us know the residents but to prove to ANYONE we have a superior department.”






Front: I am a rubber band. You stretch me out to hold things together.

Inside: Remember how flexible you are - changing activities as needed each day due to weather, lack of expected volunteers, or the craziness of the Activity Director.


Front: I am a paper clip. You use me every day to hold things together.

Inside: Remember, you help to hold many residents’ lives together each day.


Front: I am a piece of tape. You use me to hold things down on a desk or another piece of paper. I am very practical because I stick.

Inside: Remember, we need to support and stick together, continually uplifting each other every day.


Front: I am a staple. Sometimes you use me to hold a picture on a bulletin board.

Inside: Remember to hold up and support the residents each day with your caring and kindness.

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by Ralph Waldo Emerson


To laugh often and much;

to win the respect of intelligent people;

to appreciate beauty;

to find the best in others;

to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy

child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition.

To know even one life has breathed easier

because you have lived.

This is to have succeeded.

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February 1-7, 2009


Nova Scotia Recreation Professionals In Health Week



Top Ten Reasons for Residents to Attend Recreation Programs


1. Recreation assists in improving social skills.


2. Recreation assists in increasing communication skills.


3. Recreation assists in increasing passive and active range of motion.


4. Recreation assists in decreasing stress and agitation.


5. Recreation assists in decreasing the amount of falls for certain residents.


6. Recreation assists in decreasing the amount of medications for certain residents.


7. Recreation assists in decreasing signs and symptoms of depression.


8. Recreation assists in decreasing confusion and inappropriate behaviors.


9. Recreation assists in increasing self-ambulation.


10. Increased recreation decreases the amount of supervision needed on the units for nursing.

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For all the


Ordinary, happy things


You've put aside


To care for others

For all the


Hope and courage


You've instilled in them


And for all your patience



This is just a little note

sent from me to you

To thank you for your kindness

in everything you do.


You're someone I can count on

no matter what the reason

Rain or snow, sleet or hail

no matter what the season.


So, take this little note of thanks

and keep it in your heart

That's where my thoughts of you remain

and have been from the start.

Thank You for your kindness


Thank You for your thoughts


Thank You for the hope you bring


That comes right from your heart

Happy Recreation Professionals Week!

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Activity Professionals Week is a great time to educate other departments on what it is an activity department does. So many people think that activity professional don't really "work" as their jobs seem all fun & games. Yes, our jobs are fun, but many do not realize that we also do admission paperwork, on-going assessments, care plans, daily logs, etc. There is a lot of behind the scenes work that we do that others are not aware of.

In the past, our department made posters and hung them throughout the facility stating some very important "activity" facts. Such as:

1. We are required to meet residents' cognitive, physical, emotional, and religious needs.

2. Our programs are broken down into categories (ex. physical games, cognitive games, etc.) to meet the expectations of the DOH.

3. We need to provide group activities, 1:1 activities/interventions, while encouraging independant pursuits.

4. Being a part of the QA (Quality Assurance) committee; completing audits to ensure that the departments expectations are met.

These are just to name a few....the list goes on and on.

Our posters were colorful and fun and by hanging them throughout the facility, visitors also received a glimpse into our department.


I think that Activity Professional's Week is a great time to toot your own horn and it can start with educating others. :)

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Each day I give a gift to my team. We also have crab cakes for lunch (they love them) and hang the posters from PP. Any additional things given by other departments are nice but not not often given. I think this year I will add some posters using some of the ideas I have read off of this page. Some of the posts have been heart warming, thank you. We will also have a happy hour off the clock of course. I also plan on getting a new wii game for our residents from our staff to thank them for the joy they bring us.


Recreation Director


Preserve me from the Recreation Director , God,

She means well , but I’m too busy to make baskets.

I want to relive a day in July

When Sam and I went berrying.

I was eighteen ,

My hair was long and thick

And I braided it and wound it round my head

So it wouldn’t get caught on the briars,

But when we sat down in the shade to rest

I unpinned it and it came tumbling down,

And Sam proposed.

I suppose it wasn’t fair

To use my hair to make him fall in love with me,

But it turned out to be a good marriage,

And years later when our daughter said

She thought she’d cut her hair,

I said, “Oh don’t . There something

Mystical about long hair. If after a year

You still want to cut it , do but think it

Over.” A year later,

She said, “Oh Mon, I’m so glad you told me not to cut

My hair,

Jeff loves it so.”

Oh, here she comes , the recreation Director, with scissors and paste,

Would you like to try decoupage?

“No,” I say , “ I haven’t got time.”

“Nonsense,” she says, “you’re going to live a long long time”

That’s not what I mean,

I mean that all my life, I’ve been doing things

For people, with people and I have to catch up

On my thinking and feeling.

About Sam’s death , for one thing.

At the time there were so many things to do

I had to comfort the children

And Sam’s old friends who got scared

(If Sam could die , they could die too)

I had to give his clothes away and pay the bills,

I didn’t have time to think about how brave he was,

How sweet . One day,

Close to the end , I asked if there was anything I could do ,

He said ,”Yes unpin your hair.”

I said, “Oh, Sam, it’s so thin now and gray.”

“Please ,” he said , “unpin your hair.”

I did and he reached out his hand-

The skin transparent , I could see the blue veins-

And stroked my hair.

If I close my eyes , I can feel it . Sam

“Please open your eyes, the Recreation Director says,

“you don’t want to sleep the day away.”

As I say , she means well,

She wants to know what I used to do ,

Knit? Crochet?

Yes, I did all those things,

And cooked and cleaned

And raised five children,

And had things happen to me.

Beautiful things , Terrible things,

I need to think about them,

At the time there wasn’t time,

I need to sort them out,

Arrange them on the shelves of my mind.

The Recreation Director is showing me glittery beads ,

She’s a dear child and she means well,

So I tell her I might

Some other day .


Author Unknown

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