© Justin Crann
Cheryl Chase, the community sales leader for Mulberry Estates, said that the key difference between Mulberry and a nursing home is the independence of it's residents.
Elderly Moose Javians considering a reduction in household responsibilities were treated to an open house at Mulberry Estates independent living community this weekend.
“Mulberry Estates has been open 11 years as of June, 2013,” said Cheryl Chase, Mulberry’s community sales leader. “We’re an independent living community for seniors, so we’re very different from a nursing home ... when you’re tired of cooking, cleaning, going up and down stairs, and washing your own linens, that is when you move in to a community like Mulberry.”
The community, located in Moose Jaw’s north end, is “like a little town,” Chase said. It has 114 apartments on three floors, with seven apartments presently open.
Apartment sizes can vary from 350 square feet to over 1,000, she added, and are available in studio, one or two bedrooms.
“Two bedroom apartments don’t come open often and when they do, they’re just snapped up right away,” said Chase. “Even though they’re the largest and most expensive of the spaces, people don’t want to downsize sometimes.”
Mulberry is insistent on maintaining the independence of its guests, Chase said, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t helpful measures in place.
“We’re keeping our eyes open, but (residents) are mostly on their own and independent,” said Chase. “(But) you’ve always got someone looking out for you.”
Helping to maintain a smooth operation is “a kind of resident advisory committee,” said Chase, who “make sure everything is running smoothyl.”
“They have mandates and monthly meetings with our chef and our management,” she said. “It’s all done properly, minutes are taken, and if things aren’t fixed quickly enough, we have a full-time maintenance man.”
“If any issues arise, the minutes are done and things are rectified and it keeps us going.”
The presence of the advisory committee, communal dinners and recreation areas make the place feel like a village, said Chase.
“It’s kind of like a little village that way,” she said. “There’s happy people, grouchy people, doers and non-doers ... it’s wonderful that way. It’s very real.”