Even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Good Samaritan Society continues to help seniors with their housing needs.
At Good Samaritan Society – Kissimmee Village in Kissimmee, Florida, the sales and marketing staff is ready and waiting to serve anyone who needs help finding a home.
“We take calls daily from people looking for various types of housing or care,” says Stephanie Swearingen, sales and marketing director at Kissimmee Village. “We can still meet their needs; it’ll just be a little different.”
All areas of the Kissimmee Village campus – including rehab/skilled care, assisted living, senior living and home health – are accepting new residents.
“There are still people who have to move for various reasons,” Stephanie says. “Some people have been on the phone and broke down about their current situation. We’ve prayed with them and let them know we can help them now or in the future.”
Kissimmee Village’s rehab/skilled care building requires two negative COVID-19 tests before allowing a person to move in.
Given the current circumstances, traditional tours have been challenging. The Kissimmee Village team has faced this challenge head-on and embraced it by creating a virtual tour and conducting real-time tours via FaceTime and Skype.
“We’re being very strict about tours, with none in rehab/skilled care or assisted living,” says Stephanie. “If someone needs to see the space, a staff member will take a video.”
Stephanie says that some people who have called are in a situation where they need to make a move quickly and the staff does everything they can to find the right home for them.
“It’s a lot of meeting them where they’re at,” says Stephanie. “There are some extra hurdles, but we can still meet their needs.”
For residents who have moved in during the pandemic, Stephanie and her team deliver a gift and do a follow-up survey over the phone, rather than visiting in person.
When the pandemic began, Kissimmee Village sent out a letter to those who had already looked at housing to let them know what precautions they’re taking to keep residents safe, including delivering meals to each apartment resident.
“Our entire process has been flipped upside down with how we are helping people,” she says. “We’re working with competitors to refer people if needed.”
Her advice to anyone looking for senior housing is to research the communities that are out there and reach out to them, keeping in mind that some aren’t accepting new residents at this time.
“Call and see what your options are because we want to help you with your next step in life,” says Stephanie.