Student says her placement at Heron Terrace helps her make a difference to others

Nicole Bondy says she has been interested in working with seniors since high school
5/9/2018  - Deron Hamel
St. Clair College student Nicole Bondy did a placement at Heron Terrace until May 4.  

When Nicole Bondy was in high school, her grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and moved into a long-term care home. Nicole, who is studying gerontology in the social service worker program at St. Clair College, says this event planted the seed for her career aspirations.

“I started doing a lot of volunteer hours there (at the home), and I just loved it and decided that was what I wanted to do,” says Nicole, who is now doing a four-month student placement at Heron Terrace.

While St. Clair College chooses where students will do their placements, Nicole says she’s happy she ended up at the Windsor long-term care community.

Nicole was recently at Heron Terrace with another student, Natasha Lutzmann (stay tuned to S&R Today to read Natasha’s story in the coming days). Nicole and Natasha have been busy helping the life enrichment team organize programs. They’ve also been working one-to-one with residents and helping alleviate workloads for staff.

Nicole says her placement has been a rewarding experience.

“What I like best is going home at the end of the day and knowing that I helped someone or made their day a little bit better, and seeing a smile on everyone’s face when I come in here in the morning,” she says.

Heron Terrace life enrichment manager Lori George says Nicole and Natasha fit in well at Heron Terrace. They worked well with residents and staff members, and were a benefit to the life enrichment team, she adds.

“I really enjoyed seeing the girls making relationships with the residents and getting to know them and joking with them – I ... really enjoying seeing how well they adjusted and how well they fit in here,” Lori says.

“They are a big help for the life enrichment staff because (the work Nicole and Natasha do) frees them up so they can do documentation and other responsibilities that they have. They have been an amazing help.”

Nicole and Natasha were at Heron Terrace until May 4.

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