“Parkridge was truly Larry’s home for the last six years,” says Larry Billett’s sister, Barb Bell. “After he passed away, our family felt very strongly that we needed to give back to Parkridge in a way that would help both staff and other residents.”

The Billett family recently donated over $12,000 to Parkridge Centre. That donation, at the request of the family, allowed for a ceiling track system to recently be installed in a resident room dedicated to individuals with bariatric needs.

Jewel Stephens (left) of Parkridge and Barb Bell, sister of Larry Billett, with the new ceiling lift purchased in memory of Larry by his family.

Jewel Stephens (left) of Parkridge and Barb Bell, sister of Larry Billett, with the new ceiling lift purchased in memory of Larry by his family.

“Once the decision to donate was made, Parkridge was very accommodating on providing us with options for equipment that was needed,” says Barb. “We got to choose what we felt was the right piece of equipment to honour our brother’s memory.”

Ceiling track systems consist of a lift motor which travels along a track mounted to the ceiling. The system allows residents to be transferred in a comfortable and dignified way, especially for bariatric individuals. For staff, it offers an easy-to-operate system that eliminates manual lifting.

“It is donations like the Billetts’ that make such a difference for resident care and safety,” says Maureen Beisel, Manager of Resident Care at Parkridge. “Ideally, we’d have ceiling tracks in every resident room, but when budgets are limited, you have to really plan where the greatest need is. This donation means a lot to our residents and staff.”

Parkridge is a long term care facility in Saskatoon with approximately 200 residents ranging in age from toddler to senior citizen. The residence prides itself on making residents feel at home. “Our staff culture is one of community,” says Beisel. “One of the greatest benefits of work in long term care is that we have the opportunity to develop therapeutic and purposeful relationships with the residents we care for.”

Barb Bell agrees. “It was the little things the staff did that Larry most appreciated. The teasing. The special treats. Staff treated him as their friend and they knew him – his likes, his dislikes. That is what made it a home.”

Donations to Parkridge Centre’s Quality of Life Development Fund are always welcome.