Kūpuna who are staying at home or limiting interaction with loved ones may start to experience loneliness. Integrating a variety of activities while caring for kūpuna — both personally and professionally — can provide enjoyment for everyone.
• Get virtually connected.
Teaching kūpuna how to use FaceTime, Zoom or Google Meet to connect with relatives, friends and their community will help them to socialize without leaving the safety of home. Some community centers offer online classes, enabling kūpuna to participate in virtual hula or ‘ukulele lessons.
• Try a cooking project or a DIY craft.
Plan a project with kūpuna. For instance, my grandmother loves barbecued short ribs. I grocery shop, then we prepare the dish together. Engaging kūpuna in activities gives them needed structure and something to look forward to doing.
• Go through family photos.
Help digitize or organize photo albums and spend time discussing the captured memories. It’s a great cognitive exercise and can bring joy to your kupuna’s day.
Although there is no playbook for caring for kūpuna during a pandemic, it is essential that we support their social and emotional needs.
During these challenging times, they need us more than ever.