The Lantern at Morning Pointe Alzheimer’s Center of Excellence, Franklin (TN) residents Sue Harris and Martha Vowell turn otherwise forgotten flowers into beautiful bouquets for skilled nursing residents. Once a month, the memory care community partners with Kroger – West Haven to help bring smiles to individuals living in a local skilled nursing community through the Petal Project. Kroger donates flowers that are past their sale date but still have life in them, and the residents spend the day sorting through the flowers to find the best ones and create flower arrangements as one of their many community service projects. “The Petal Project is a way for our community’s many gardeners and flower lovers to engage in an activity that connects them to their hobbies while also allowing them to give to those who are not well or need a pick-me-up,” explains The Lantern executive director Ashley Briggs.
Martha, a florist at Kroger who assists the residents with the Petal Project, agrees. “I love that we can do this. I have customers who have loved ones at Morning Pointe and they stop me to tell me how much the residents enjoy arranging the flowers,” she says.
Indeed, The Lantern residents seem to benefit from creating floral arrangements through the Petal Project just as much as those who receive their arrangements. For Harris, arranging flowers brought back memories of joining her son at his florist shop after her retirement. “Working with these flowers reminds me of spending that time with my son and seeing his talent,” she said. “I never thought he liked flowers like that, but they make me think of him now!”
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