Special care homes celebrate staff

A card prepared for the Mont St. Joseph Home staff by students at the daycare. (Peter Lozinski/Daily Herald)

Brian Martin says the key to happy residents is a happy staff.

Martin, the executive director of Mont St. Joseph, along with other senior management and board members, thanked their hard-working staff members last week to celebrate Special Care Home Week.

The festivities kicked off with a 5:30 a.m. coffee and breakfast Monday morning, and continued with a receiving service Tuesday, where residents give care to families and staff, a Thursday pancake breakfast and a 45-minute staff celebration on Friday.

“I’m pretty glad (the staff had a good week) because if they’re not having a good week, nobody else is — I’m not having a good week, but more importantly our residents aren’t having a good week,” he said.

“For us, it’s simple. If we’ve got an engaged staff proud about what it does, that considers its work more than just a paycheck, then the people who live here are the winners, and that means society is the winner.”

According to foundation vice chair Angela Weinrich, that respect for the staff shows up in respect for the organization’s clients.

‘Something special about Mont St. Joseph is the people in Mont St. Joseph Home. I’ve seen firsthand how the staff treats everyone who comes in the door and the people who live here. It’s really something special.”

That positive outlook was shared by individual staff members as well.

Roger Delisle, who has worked as the facility maintenance operator for the past year, described it as one of the best jobs he’d ever had.

“It’s a lot of fun,” he said. “It’s something I’ve never done before, working in this atmosphere with the residents is a unique experience.”

He said that the attitude of treating staff like family makes everyone feel more at home.

“These places give people the opportunity to live here, and rest assured that they will be taken care of just like they were family.”

Martin said he’s proud of his staff, who deal with difficult situations and hardships with a positive attitude.

“They work under such hardships. 99 per cent of the time they handle it with skill, professionalism, a sense of humour and with great dignity. We’re so proud of them.”

What the staff had to say

The Daily Herald chatted with a few staff members about their work at Mont St. Joseph Home. Here’s what they had to say


Harsamrat Klaer, LPN

“It’s a fun place. I like working here. Everything I do I enjoy. (The importance of celebrating special care home week is) it’s very important that we are giving back to the workers, appreciating the hard work they put in. It’s very important to celebrate these occasions


Sharon Mohninger, CCA

“We look after all of our residents’ needs. We try to make their day, try to make them happy, try to make sure they’re not lonely or bored, and that they’re well looked after. (The best part) is interacting with the residents. They’re a joy to work with. Management is giving back to the staff, it shows they really appreciate (us). It’s nice to have this week.”


Carlene Swales, Recreation Coordinator

“My job is to enhance people’s lives, Giving them a reason to get out of bed in the morning and a reason to live. Mont is a place that brings together all ages and all walks of life. I think with the volunteers, residents an staff, we all come together and we’re all a big family.

“I have a really fun job. To pick one thing I love the most is hard. But it’s to give residents a reason to get out of bed and have a purposeful day.

“(Care Homes like Mont St. Joseph) are very important. It’s its own community. It’s important for residents to come from homes into our own hone to be our family here.”