Sensory accessibility path opens for St. Joseph’s at Fleming residents in Peterborough

The day St. Joseph’s at Fleming residents had been waiting for finally came Tuesday.

The long-term-care home officially opened its new Resident Sensory Accessibility Path. It’s a paved pathway that wraps around the back of the building, featuring gazebos, flowers, memorial gardens, sensory stations and a pond.

John Gray has lived at St. Joseph’s for just over five years. He’s president of the resident council and is also a part of the garden committee.Gray said residents were eager to see the finished product.

“We’ve been waiting for this day now for quite a while,” he said.

Though truth be told, Gray already took a tour of the path in his mobile chair, before the grand reveal. “I snuck a couple of rounds in while it was being built,” he said.

And it was just what Gray hoped it would be. “It’s excellent, beautiful,” he said.

Construction of the path started in the fall and wrapped up in July. It now connects gardens in The Fleming Garden Sanctuary, a project that started in 2004.

Patrick Gillespie, St. Joseph’s at Fleming CEO, said the sanctuary was what got the ball rolling. “It started with a dream to build a garden,” Gillespie said.

From there, ideas blossomed and the pathway was dreamed up.

The wraparound path is open to the public and is a great way to get the home’s 200 residents, family and onsite day care kids outside, Gillespie said. Before Brealey Dr. was redone, Gillespie said residents didn’t have many safe places to walk and getting outdoors is crucial.

The path not only provides a safe and accessible route, but it also encourages more outdoor programs and gets residents to engage with others along their jaunt. “It just gets people out and happier in all weather,” Gillespie said.]

 

Article Originally from Peterborough This Week
By Lance Anderson / Metroland