Senior Living Staff Highlight
Concierge Corner – A Valuable Community Resource
In this senior living staff highlight, we would like to introduce you to Rae Dunmire. When residents of Dallas Retirement Village (DRV) need a little help to make their lives easier and a lot more fun, they look to Dunmire at the community’s Concierge Corner. Dunmire joined the resident services team in August 2020, expanding the concierge services offered well beyond the more typical assistance with theatre tickets, tee times, and sporting passes.
A Familiar Face Returns
“Senior living is my passion,” says Dunmire, a Salem, Oregon, resident who returned to Dallas Retirement Village after previous staff positions on both the Life Enrichment and Environmental Services teams. “I worked with fantastic people on a fantastic campus,” she says, “the chance to come back was a welcome opportunity.”
Rae recently graduated college with a degree in Health Psychology with an emphasis in behavioral psychology, social psychology, geriatrics and aging, and health administration. “Working with seniors is how I want to spend the rest of my life,” she says. “I started working in the field in 2013 when I first started college and have since spent very little time away from the field. I’ve yet to find an occupation more fulfilling than serving seniors.”
A Unique Senior Living Challenge
“While the current pandemic is definitely not what any of us signed up for, the residents and staff of DRV have a beautiful way of taking everything in stride,” says Rae. “Yes, things are different outside. But the staff’s determination to provide our residents with the best care and services possible remains. Each department has truly stepped up its game to serve our residents. That’s where Concierge Corner and I come in, as well. My role looks a lot different now than what we hope it will post-COVID. These days, we try and focus on the things we can do.”
Vision for the Concierge
The role of concierge was developed, in part, to provide additional support to the front desk. With the concierge as part of the team, we can continue to provide excellent resident services, like delivering packages, unlocking doors, and responding to emergencies while also maintaining a warm and welcoming presence at the front desk. Of course, the role has elevated the services Dallas Retirement Village is able to provide even beyond its original goal. “[During these COVID months] we’ve been reaching out to the surrounding community to find essential services to visit DRV,” says Dunmire, “and have been successful so far in finding pedicure services and hearing aid assistance. This is just the beginning in helping to better serve our residents.”
We are excited to grow into the more traditional role of the concierge by connecting residents to the happenings in the surrounding communities, like booking restaurant reservations and tee times, purchasing tickets to local entertainment and sporting events, providing local attraction itineraries for visiting guests, and more. We also focus on what we can do for the residents here at “home”.
Above and Beyond
Dallas Retirement Village recognizes how challenging times require increased and innovative services. During 2020 increased communication needs have accelerated the demand for personal computer skills. The goal for the Concierge Corner is to provide technical assistance that will build the technology skills of the DRV residents. “We want our residents to feel confident and empowered to use whatever media device—phones, TVs, tablets, and laptops—they choose,” says Dunmire. “Quick, easy, and efficient communication is so important these days.”
All resident stories are important to the senior living staff at DRV. Using a program called OneDay, the concierge and other trained staff can record a resident’s memories and stories and format them into a professional video to share with friends and family. “We are also hoping to involve our residents in more webinars and lectures,” says Dunmire, “so they can more widely share their stories, expertise, and life-long learning experiences.”
Senior Living Staff Dedication
“The entire senior living staff and residents at DRV are trying to support each other during these times,” says Dunmire. “This pandemic has been hard on everyone—especially for the social and independent residents. Taking this into account, we know we all must be innovative—continually evolving our services, being extra patient, extra considerate, quicker to serve, and quicker in thinking on our feet.”
“Personally, I really cherish the opportunity to be another senior living staff resource, another helping hand, another listening ear, and another friend to our residents. I believe God has asked us to love and serve one another—and this job lets me do that every single day.”
In Closing . . .
Rae Dunmire’s senior living staff highlight helps paint the picture of Dallas Retirement Village’s dedication to providing freedom and peace of mind for its residents. As a faith-based community in a neighborly small-town setting, it offers a spiritual lifestyle for residents, all the comforts and conveniences they need and want, and the opportunity to live a rewarding lifestyle supported daily by the sincere respect and compassion of a dedicated senior living staff.