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Our Projects

Over the years, the Council has been able to improve the quality of life of our residents in a number of ways.   Some of our accomplishments have been made possible only through fundraising efforts, donatioThe Gazebo in the Bungalows' courtyardns both large and small, and regular Council memberships.  This page will show you some of the things we do, not only through financial support but also the significant efforts of Council members, other volunteers, and the support of the PDC staff and management.

The Gazebo

This sanctuary in the Bungalows courtyard was completed in July 2009.  This was made possible through the raffle of a beautiful quilt generously donated by some of the members of the Ottawa Valley Quilters Guild and other efforts by the Council.  The furniture was acquired through donations in memory of the husband of a Council member.

The Gazebo has made it possible for our Bungalows residents and their visitors to enjoy the courtyard from the comfort of a shaded area.

Art Therapy

The Family & Friends Council continually seeks initiatives to enhance the lives of the residents at the Peter D. Clark Long Term Care Centre.  Our constant wish is to be able to create a better “home” atmosphere for the residents by providing extra therapeutic activities.  With this in mind, a plan was developed to complete an original painting in each of the eight wings of the Houses and the four Bungalow wings, thereby creating 12 original “masterpieces” that could then be hung in each area of the residence.  However, in some of the wings the residents were so enthusiastic that we were able to complete two paintings!  Each painting was a group effort involving as many residents as possible from each wing.

With monies donated by the Family & Friends Council, eighteen 16″ x 20″ canvases, gauche paints, brushes and easels were purchased.  Jeremy Langdon, a local artist, assisted us by mixing the paints and covering canvases with a wash picking up a different colour from each wing and then each resident would be asked to paint on the canvas. Jeremy asked the resident to choose a colour, mixed it for them on a brush and they then painted whatever came to mind. It was truly amazing to see what developed! If a resident were unable to reach the canvas, it would be brought to them, thus ensuring there was participation from almost all residents. The last painting was completed on August 20th, 2004. From the 16 original masterpieces completed, the Family & Friends’ Council chose 12 of the best and printed art card hasty notes. We continue to sell these art cards 6 per package for $5.00 to generate extra funds for the Family & Friends’ Council.

The positive comments received from both staff and family members were tremendous.  The staff commented on all the smiles they saw on the residents during the project.  Even if they were not participating at that particular time they thoroughly enjoyed sitting and watching the paintings develop.  The therapeutic effects were also very obvious.  During one session, a family member was present when her mother, who had been an artist before suffering from dementia, was asked to paint.  Her daughter told us that since her illness, her mother had lost the use of her right hand and that perhaps we should put the paint brush in her left hand.  We did so but when her mother saw the canvas and the brush she immediately transferred the brush into her right hand and began to paint!  Her daughter was overcome with emotion and everyone was excited to see the first-hand evidence proving art really is therapy!

Following completion of the pilot project, The Family and Friends’ Council held an extremely successful vernissage of the paintings on October 14th, 2004, attended by many dignitaries and media.

Not only was this a very valuable project because the paintings produced are now decorating the Halls of the Peter D. Clark Centre, but also because the Management, Staff and Residents are extremely proud to have been involved with the Family & Friends Council on this collaborative effort.

The Family & Friends Council recommends that all residents have the opportunity to participate in all programs offered to them and that the frequency of the art and music programs be increased.  We have proven that art is of benefit to all.

What can you do?  You can help the Family and Friends Council in their efforts to provide enhanced activities for residents of PDC by purchasing a set of Art Cards.  These are available at the reception desk and our Sunday Socials.

Shadow Boxes and Biographies

Anne Kirk in June, 2010

This is a personal account by the Council’s past president.  She is the daughter of former resident Anne Kirk.  You may click on the images below to enlarge them.

Anne's Shadow Box

The Alzheimer Society of Ottawa conceived and developed the design and program for a 48-bed innovative dementia care facility known as “The Bungalows”. The goal was to provide a demonstration model that would influence the way care is delivered to individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders in Ottawa and across Canada.

The Bungalows is a very special place for our loved ones.  My Mother  was a resident here for 8 years.

Anne's Biography

I felt it was very important to find a way for staff, other family members, and volunteers to communicate and get to know our residents.  With permission from our Administrator, the Family and Friends Council purchased shadow boxes and biography frames for each resident.

To further get to know our residents, I developed a template for a biography and Peter D. Clark staff input the information and this this was put into a frame.

These shadow boxes and biography frames created a means of communication with our residents.

A personal example in my Mother`s biography and shadow box, it shows she was a figure skater/teacher and a hockey player, so if she is not willing to take her medication etc. the staff or I can mention she has a game or a class and that usually puts her in a better mood.

Sometimes small things are so very important to an Alzheimer unit.

– Pat Gordon

The Website

The website you are now looking at was officially unveiled on June 12, 2010 – the inaugural Family Council Day in Ontario.  It was designed and built entirely through volunteer efforts.  We do, however, pay for the web address and to have the site operated (“hosted”) by a company who specializes in this.

While this website is controlled and funded independently of the Peter D. Clark Centre – and the City of Ottawa – we are nonetheless grateful to have the enthusiastic support and cooperation of Peter D. Clark’s administrator, management, and staff.  We believe this site has the potential to be a true public service to the families and friends of our residents – and, by extension, the residents themselves.

Hopefully as you take a look around this website you will find something interesting or useful.  Keep checking back; we’ll do our best to provide relevant information in the News page, and to keep you up-to-date on Council activities in the Calendar page.

June 12, 2010 marked the launch of what we think of as Release 1.0 and we will gradually add more content.  If you find anything particularly useful – or, moreover, if you think of something you would find helpful – please let us know; you can get in touch with us through the Contact Us page.