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Red Deer Legion donations assist Extendicare residents

Equipment helps seniors with mobility issues
Extendicare Michener Hill residents have a new specialized shower chair and wheelchair bike thanks to donations from the Red Deer Legion. Those at the presentation, held May 15, 2024, included (back row) Family Advisory Council of Extendicare Michener Hill president Kirby Lucas, Extendicare administrator Jason Carson, Family Advisory Council members Joan Komorowski, Michele Cameron and Peggy Beres, Red Deer Legion secretary Jim Bourgoin, Red Deer Legion president Bev Hanes, family member Bill MacDonald, quality of life aide Tilly Nelson, recreation manager Shelby Friesen, Family Advisory Council member Lois Broome, maintenance supervisor Jason Lanouette, (front row ) veterans Bill Brolund, Jean 'Stormy' Avy, Walter Kohut, Wally Zawyrucha and Rita Mantai. (Photo by SUSAN ZIELINSKI/Advocate staff)

Extendicare Michener Hill has another specialized shower chair and a wheelchair bike for residents thanks to the Red Deer Legion.

Extendicare's Family Advisory Council applied to the local legion for funding, which is available from the legion's Poppy Fund, and the council received $10,000 for each piece of equipment. 

The wheelchair bike arrived during the COVID-19 pandemic and the shower chair came earlier this year.

"That wheelchair bike is such a great idea because they do need to get out in the sunshine and fresh air," said legion president Bev Hanes about the bike that allows a resident to ride in front while a recreation staff member does the pedalling.

"It's something to make them smile."

On Thursday more staff will be trained to use the bike which will likely be used every day during good weather. 

The bike and shower chair are available to any Extendicare resident. They do not have to be veterans.

Extendicare maintenance supervisor Jason Lanouette said the facility has different types of shower chairs, including two other specialized chairs, for residents with mobility issues. 

"It's a nice piece of equipment. It's just very comfortable for residents to sit in and get the care they are needing," said Lanouette about the adjustable padded shower chair that reclines.

Over the years the legion has contributed towards other equipment at Extendicare, including a bladder scanner and palliative chair.

The Family Advisory Council said it is grateful to the legion for its generosity, as well as the work of recreation therapist Melissa D’Souza and an Extendicare volunteer who made the bike presentation to the legion. 



Susan Zielinski

About the Author: Susan Zielinski

Susan has been with the Red Deer Advocate since 2001. Her reporting has focused on education, social and health issues.
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