The Legacy Center partnered with NOWINCLUDED on The “Your Legacy of Health” Project where seniors in our community were given the chance to share stories about their history, what life is like for them during the pandemic, and what health and legacy means to them. Each member that participated in our program was given a flash drive with a copy of important documents like emergency contact forms, an advanced directive, a professional portrait, and a video interview of the participant explaining what they hope to leave behind for their loved ones.
While nearly 80 percent of Americans want to die at home in a familiar, comfortable setting, only about 20 percent actually do so. Not only are people dying in hospitals, but with the current pandemic, they are dying alone, as families are unable to be with them. The current pandemic has emphasized the importance of planning ahead and making an advanced directive to specify care preferences and a “healthcare proxy” in case of a sudden injury or serious illness.
We understand that this may be an uncomfortable conversation to have, but it’s a necessary one given the current global circumstances. When approached tactfully and with thoughtfulness, your elders will likely be grateful for the resulting clarity and reassurance that comes from knowing there is a plan in place to take care of them.
Not nearly enough Americans make provisions for their end-of-life care before it’s too late. Completing the Advance Directive may be one of the most important conversations you’ll ever have with your loved ones. This process doesn’t have to be scary; it can be a thoughtful exchange and an ongoing conversation as health conditions change. The “Your Legacy of Health” project is ensuring families are better educated and engaged in life planning during these uncertain times of COVID-19.
For more information on opportunities for senior engagement and volunteering, visit liveyourlegacyhere.com.