Deupree House and our sister retirement communities are committed to outreach. We operate a number of programs that help our residents build relationships in Greater Cincinnati while educating the community on aging gracefully and what Deupree House stands for.
Deupree House Meal on Wheels
Perhaps one of the greatest expressions of community outreach at Deupree is the Meals on Wheels program.
During the week, our retirement community residents prefer to eat most meals in their own homes, leaving our kitchen to sit idle until dinner service. These days however, the kitchen at Deupree comes alive as program volunteers create nutritious meals for dozens of older adults in Greater Cincinnati.
Not all Meals on Wheels are the same. Here are a few things that make the Deupree difference in our program:
- All meals are prepared daily in our own kitchens and delivered hot each day. You’ll never get a frozen or TV dinner on weekdays unless you request it.
- Our menu isn’t “take it or leave it.” Choices are available for both entrees and beverages, and we always try to provide meals that satisfy customer preferences. We can make meat-free meals for vegetarians or make sure that a meal has been cut before it is delivered for those who have trouble handling tableware.
- We’re always ready to make alterations for older adults with special dietary needs. Our kitchen team turns out diabetic, low-fat, low-sodium, and gluten free meals for our customers with allergies or other medical conditions.
- We never want to see anyone go hungry, so we make our portion sizes larger than what you’ll find in other Meals on Wheels programs.
- Our friendly drivers provide a familiar face and much-needed personal contact for our customers on a regular basis. We’ll never leave without making contact, unless arrangements have been made in advance.
- We make adjustments to our delivery schedules depending on our customer needs, such as delivering weekend meals on early or re-delivering meals to clients who have missed their original delivery time due to an appointment or other engagement.
The Council for Lifelong Engagement
In America, there seems to be a fear of aging.
More than half of the adults in a recent national study conducted by Associated Press-NORC Center voiced significant concerns about losing independence and mental faculties as they aged. In fact, aging was a topic they’d rather avoid thinking about altogether.
The Council for Lifelong Engagement (CLLE), spearheaded by Laura Lamb, Vice President of Housing and Healthcare, and volunteers from the ERH retirement communities, is dedicated to ending ageism— starting with Cincinnati’s youngest residents.
Residents change perceptions of older adults and tear down stereotypes by sharing their wisdom and experience with school children of all ages. They speak to classes at four Cincinnati area schools on a variety of topics, from art to business to science.
In 2013, the CLLE program entered into the third year of partnership with the School of the Nativity— where the pilot program began.
“We started out small,” says Bob Herring, principal at the School of the Nativity. “And from the initial program we were able to expand it to include multiple grades over multiple subjects. It’s really become part of the experience here at Nativity— something that the kids look forward to. There’s nothing like sitting down with folks from the older generation and hearing what they have to say, hearing stories of real people that really lived [through historical events] as opposed to reading it out of a textbook or watching a video.”
It’s been a slow journey, but one that has produced undeniable results. The innovation of CLLE curriculum enrichment has garnered national recognition for both Nativity and Episcopal Retirement Homes.