During a very challenging time when she was dealing with some health concerns, Maxine Atias found Brentland Woods, a place that is now her happy home among the other residents and staff, and where she’s rekindled her love for enjoying nature.
Maxine spent much of her childhood at her uncle’s farm, so she’s always found joy and solace in the natural world. Her tastefully decorated one-bedroom apartment overlooks the gardens and walking path at Brentland Woods, just outside her living room window. She says she loves to walk around the grounds, and seeing the birds and the deer have always inspired her.
Another inspiration in her life has been connecting with other senior citizens. After earning her certification in gerontology at St. John Fisher College, she worked with the Rochester Police Department, helping senior victims of crime find new, safe places to live. “You can learn a lot from them,” says Maxine. “My clients would tell me about their life stories, and I helped them get out of bad situations. It was a rewarding job but very challenging.”
Later on in her career, while working at The Strong National Museum of Play’s Butterfly Garden, Maxine was able to combine both of her interests. She and her supervisor developed a special program for seniors called Butterfly Chats. “My boss had a dream to create a program just for seniors, where they could come and hear about the different types of butterflies. It was really special,” says Maxine.
She emphasizes that the staff at Brentland Woods is very special, too. “It’s so comforting to be here. The staff’s always there when you need them, and they go out of their way for you. If you have a problem, you can go to them. They’re always asking if you need anything.”
Maxine’s daughter Jill is equally thankful that Maxine found this community at just the right time. Jill is married with two sons and works full-time, and is grateful for ESLC’s help, along with the care and support, her mother has received at Brentland Woods. “We can’t say enough good things about it. My mom is so happy!”