(Fort Myers, FL – June 18, 2021) – The Lodge at Cypress Cove has been selected as one of 22 skilled nursing facilities from around the state of Florida to be awarded a three-year grant therapeutic indoor garden program.
A kick-off event, featuring delivery and presentation of the indoor Eldergrow Garden system, was held Friday morning on the HealthPark Florida campus of Cypress Cove with representatives of their Life-Plan community, Seattle-based Eldergrow, and state grant sponsor LeadingAge Florida.
Eldergrow’s portable therapeutic garden is designed to bring joy and stimulation from indoor gardening for residents of the skilled nursing community. The availability of the mobile garden program to Cypress Cove is the result of a $1 million grant awarded jointly by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Region 4 and by the Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA) to LeadingAge Florida, the state’s only advocacy association representing the entire continuum of care for older adults.
The three-year program at The Lodge begins in early July and will feature two classes per month given by a certified instructor. The therapeutic horticulture program, explains Eldergrow CEO and founder Orla Concannon, is scientifically proven to reduce depression, improve balance, and lower risk factors for dementia in residents by 36 percent.
“In this unprecedented time, it brings us comfort that our residents can benefit from safely of interacting with nature through their program’s engagement. Eldergrow and our incredibly dedicated and caring staff will now make that possible,” said Executive Director Mary Franklin.
Steve Bahmer, president, and CEO of LeadingAge Florida told those at Friday’s kickoff that the program being offered to nearly two dozen of the organization’s statewide members should be a great benefit to residents of communities like The Lodge at Cypress Cove.
The indoor gardening program has been proven to improve one’s mood, motor skills, and improve the quality and quantity of a resident’s sleep. Beside the horticultural portion of the program, the Eldergrow program will also feature culinary and garden art sessions.
The mobile garden is handcrafted by veterans and adults living with disabilities. The garden center is accessible for seated or standing gardeners and comprised of organic soil and nontoxic plants. A custom lighting system has been installed to help in the growth and lighting.
About Cypress Cove
Cypress Cove—a not-for-profit organization, opened in 1999—is a well-established, highly-respected, Life Plan Community (formerly known as a continuing care retirement community) with regional and national recognition. Located on a beautiful 48-acre campus at HealthPark Florida in South Fort Myers, Cypress Cove is home to more than 600 residents and offers a full complement (529) of quality living options (independent living, home health, assisted living, skilled nursing, memory care assisted living and rehabilitative care).
Eldergrow, a Seattle-based company, brings nature indoors to elders living in senior living and nursing care settings through therapeutic gardening program. The therapeutic horticulture garden program is a hands-on-wellness program facilitated by onsite educators who teach therapeutic gardening classes and provide garden maintenance.
About LeadingAge Florida
For more than 58 years, LeadingAge Florida has been the state’s leading advocate for high-quality senior living, aging services, and care. LeadingAge Florida is the only statewide association representing the full continuum of care for seniors. The association provides up-to-date regulatory information, a wide variety of educational opportunities, representation before the Legislature and government agencies, group purchasing services, and opportunities for networking with peers to help member communities best serve the needs of Florida’s senior population.