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My long association as a seasoned Food & Beverage Manager, with world’s best luxury hospitality properties and resorts, has taught me how to exceed the expectations of all kinds of guests. But, catering to elderly residents at Epoch Elder Care has given me an opportunity to make a difference in our elderly’s lives. In the last 6 years at Epoch (out of my 15 years’ career), I have worked and interacted with the elderly, and this has given me the wisdom and life sessions of a century! This has also been utmost satisfying emotionally. My love for food has got a whole new meaning in serving the seniors. Being a geriatric dietician makes me feel empowered, educated and inspired to meet seniors and offer them ‘Person Centred Nutritional Care’ at Epoch. Being in hospitality industry, I had learnt that ‘Guest is God’, but, being a part of senior care gives me holistic joy and satisfaction which are true ingredients of my passion and success. Epoch is always special and close to my heart, wherein I feel this is an opportunity for me to express my gratitude, and giving back to society. As per our Indian culture, our elders are our grass roots, and I have learnt from them and their rich experienced lovely stories. As we know, food is an integral part of every individual, irrespective of any age group. We, at Epoch, have ensured that our elderly residents enjoy every meal they have; and keep their taste buds active. My focus is on evidence based approach and practices, specially whilst catering to our residents with dementia. My key tools to cater to residents with dementia are ‘Person Centered Nutritional Care’, taking care of their likes and dislikes, food fortification and soft diets. Also, setting of tableware as per dementia management, such as color contrast, ready plated meal choices, are few examples which help me to serve our residents healthy and happy meals through the day, across our homes. There is no celebration that we don’t enjoy at Epoch and during the celebrations, we make our residents feel like home. The food we make and serve is an integral part of these celebrations! We involve our residents in every festival, by making home-made ladoo, gujiya, namakpare, mathri, coconut burfi etc. which gives a feeling of togetherness and bonding of a family, and this makes festivals special to all- the residents and team members. While preparing ladoos, our beloved residents enjoy having them while still making it, and this sight reminds me of my childhood, when I was growing up with my grandparents. At times, when our residents make these sweets, their old memories are revived. We have residents from all over corners of country which inspires us to celebrate different food festivals like Rajasthani, Bengali, Maharashtrian, Punjabi, Gujarati, Bihari etc. in our Epoch homes. It gives me immense pleasure and happiness when my home-made sweets and food recipes bring smiles to our residents. Designing compressive menus, special therapeutic diets gives me a sense of reward and satisfaction, warmth and love for our seniors. What is most important for me, is to make sure that my residents have a good dining experience and a smile on their faces…and this lights up my day like nothing else can!
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