Occupational therapist Cheryl Block and recreation coordinator Bonnie Casault were part of the team that helped bring Kalum Cafe to Terraceview Lodge. (Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

Kalum Cafe opens at Terraceview Lodge to create more social space

Cafe intended to be a place of gathering for residents, staff and visitors

With funky teal seats, cool wall art and a mountain view, the Terraceview Lodge has a new space to get caffeinated.

In an effort to make the lodge feel like home, Kalum Cafe opened this past August to provide a gathering place for residents, staff and visitors.

“It puts a smile on my face every time I walk in here, it’s just really a space that I think conveys that idea of community,” says Cheryl Block, an occupational therapist at Terraceview Lodge. “This is a place where they come, relax, socialize with their friends.”

READ MORE: Terraceview Lodge meets B.C. standard of care

Transforming the second-floor lobby into a cafe took almost a year, and is part of Terraceview Lodge’s initiative to make spaces more inviting. Block says it’s important to have a cozy area to come together for a warm drink, especially as it may be difficult for some residents to leave the facility and visit town. Instead of sitting in their rooms all day, they have a familiar social activity to look forward to.

She adds that it serves as a clinical benefit as well, as it gives residents a purposeful destination to walk to. Different programming groups also use the space to meet.

“It’s where people can feel that they can come, and it’s like getting out, so if you have someone that’s not very mobile and can’t go out into the community, they’re able to come here for coffee,” says Block.

The cafe took a lot of planning between different department to ensure the space was accessible for everyone. The cafe is furnished with height-adjustable tables, chairs with footstools and bright decor to make it inviting for people of all abilities. Residents even created a decorative wreath using coffee filters that were painted to help contribute to the cafe’s design.

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Terraceview Lodge resident Albert Doll says there was no area for seniors like this before to drink coffee. He says he is happy to now be able to visit Kalum Cafe as part of his daily routine

“It’s a good place to come to have a cup of coffee or tea to relax and enjoy myself,” Doll says.

Block says the Kalum Cafe isn’t their only project — their teams have also been working to make other spaces at Terraceview Lodge more engaging.

For example, each resident’s door has a different “door wrap” that helps them indicate which room is theirs, which is extremely helpful for those with dementia or memory loss. Employees also wear bright yellow name tags to help identify themselves to residents.

Come holiday season, Terraceview Lodge is planning to have residents help decorate a “coffee-themed” Christmas tree to put on display at the Kalum Cafe.



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Terraceview Lodge resident Albert Doll says he likes coming to Kalum Cafe to have a cup of coffee every day. (Natalia Balcerzak/Terrace Standard)

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