Share Your Story

Support On Lok by telling us about your experiences

Every day, On Lok touches the lives of thousands of seniors throughout the Bay Area. Our loving and compassionate staff partner with families and caregivers to provide support, enabling our seniors to live in the community for as long as possible.

For over forty-five years, the quality of life of our families has been positively impacted in numerous ways. With your help, we would like to capture and record your memories and experiences and share them with our community.

On Lok invites our participants, seniors, families, caregivers, and staff to share stories of how On Lok has benefited the seniors in our lives. Feedback can be submitted by e-mail or U.S. mail, or in person at one of our centers.

Once received, we will share your input on our website and other materials as a way to publicly recognize everyone’s efforts and experiences.

Thank you for sharing your fond memories and experiences from On Lok!

Every day, On Lok touches the lives of thousands of seniors throughout the Bay Area. Our loving and compassionate staff partner with families and caregivers to provide support, enabling our seniors to live in the community for as long as possible.

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Going Above and Beyond for Our Participants

Rev. Jeff Bert, M. Div., On Lok Lifeways Chaplain
February, 2014

As a chaplain, I have the advantage of seeing On Lok at work “up front and personal” at all centers. The thing that strikes me the most across all centers is the “above and beyond” efforts regularly made by our interdisciplinary staff on behalf of participants. Our quality employees will do whatever they can to advance the welfare of our seniors. A recent example is the work that one social worker in particular did to help a participant get settled back in her home after a hospitalization and nursing home stay.

This participant had suffered the loss of her husband about 12 years ago. After this tragedy, she became deeply depressed and only left her apartment when absolutely necessary. As a result, her apartment became a cluttered mess, reflecting her inner darkness and isolation. She slept on a ratty sofa as a decade passed by. 

After joining On Lok several months ago, she began coming to the Day Health Center and “waking up,” as she put it. She started to feel alive again as the medical and therapeutic staff engaged her. She enjoyed the movement and socialization offered by the activities staff. So it was a disappointment when this progress was hindered by a fall and subsequent hospitalization during the holidays. Next she had to stay in a nursing facility for some weeks. But she got better and soon it was time to return home. She would require home assistance from geriatric aides, but she was embarrassed for anyone to see her apartment. Her social worker dispelled her shame and convinced her to allow him to help clean the place up. It was a big project. The apartment was covered in old papers and years-old mouse droppings. This social worker put in several hours (including, I believe, some personal time) to clean the place, all the while empowering the participant to choose what would be thrown out or kept.

It was the participant who told me about this, beaming (yet still admitting to feeling embarrassed). “I was basically dead for a decade. Now I feel like facing life again,” she told me. The cleaned-up apartment is providing a big psychological lift for her. “And he found a bed for me so I don’t have to sleep on the sofa, and new sheets as well,” she said. “He’s a miracle-worker!”

When I went to talk to the social worker, he was very self-effacing. “I’m no saint; I just looked at the situation and realized I was the person in a position to help,” he said with a shrug. He added: “These are relationships, and I get so much from our participants. It’s not all one-way. We enrich each other as we do this work.”

Stories

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    Rev. Jeff Bert, M. Div., On Lok Lifeways Chaplain
    February, 2014

    Going Above and Beyond for Our Participants

    As a chaplain, I have the advantage of seeing On Lok at work “up front and personal” at all centers. The thing that strikes me the most across all centers is the “above and beyond” efforts regularly made by our interdisciplinary staff on behalf of participants. Our quality employees will do whatever they can to advance the welfare of our seniors. A recent example is the work that one social worker in particular did to help a participant get settled back in her home after a hospitalization and nursing home stay.

    This participant had suffered the loss of her husband about 12 years ago. After this tragedy, she became deeply depressed and only left her apartment when absolutely necessary. As a result, her apartment became a cluttered mess, reflecting her inner darkness and isolation. She slept on a ratty sofa as a decade passed by. 

    After joining On Lok several months ago, she began coming to the Day Health Center and “waking up,” as she put it. She started to feel alive again as the medical and therapeutic staff engaged her. She enjoyed the movement and socialization offered by the activities staff. So it was a disappointment when this progress was hindered by a fall and subsequent hospitalization during the holidays. Next she had to stay in a nursing facility for some weeks. But she got better and soon it was time to return home. She would require home assistance from geriatric aides, but she was embarrassed for anyone to see her apartment. Her social worker dispelled her shame and convinced her to allow him to help clean the place up. It was a big project. The apartment was covered in old papers and years-old mouse droppings. This social worker put in several hours (including, I believe, some personal time) to clean the place, all the while empowering the participant to choose what would be thrown out or kept.

    It was the participant who told me about this, beaming (yet still admitting to feeling embarrassed). “I was basically dead for a decade. Now I feel like facing life again,” she told me. The cleaned-up apartment is providing a big psychological lift for her. “And he found a bed for me so I don’t have to sleep on the sofa, and new sheets as well,” she said. “He’s a miracle-worker!”

    When I went to talk to the social worker, he was very self-effacing. “I’m no saint; I just looked at the situation and realized I was the person in a position to help,” he said with a shrug. He added: “These are relationships, and I get so much from our participants. It’s not all one-way. We enrich each other as we do this work.”

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    Open and Supportive Staff

    Lisa L.S., Certified Speech Language Pathologist
    February, 2014

    “As a speech language pathologist who provides swallowing therapy to On Lok San Jose participants, the best part of my job is being able to modify someone’s diet so that they can continue to have the pleasure of eating food by mouth safely. I can only do this because the On Lok staff has always been open and supportive to my recommendations and they have helped me relay these recommendations to caregivers as well.”

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    Lisa L.S., Certified Speech Language Pathologist
    February, 2014

    Open and Supportive Staff

    “As a speech language pathologist who provides swallowing therapy to On Lok San Jose participants, the best part of my job is being able to modify someone’s diet so that they can continue to have the pleasure of eating food by mouth safely. I can only do this because the On Lok staff has always been open and supportive to my recommendations and they have helped me relay these recommendations to caregivers as well.”

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    Proud Nutrition Staff

    Wing Lum, On Lok Kitchen Staff
    December, 2013

    “As a lead cook at On Lok, I really appreciate that On Lok has such a wonderful program that provides nutrition to the elderly. When I see our participants eating meals in our center, I’m really happy. On Lok gives our kitchen department an important role to help our participants eat well and stay healthy, and I’m proud to be a part of it.”

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    Wing Lum, On Lok Kitchen Staff
    December, 2013

    Proud Nutrition Staff

    “As a lead cook at On Lok, I really appreciate that On Lok has such a wonderful program that provides nutrition to the elderly. When I see our participants eating meals in our center, I’m really happy. On Lok gives our kitchen department an important role to help our participants eat well and stay healthy, and I’m proud to be a part of it.”

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