For anyone affected by Alzheimer’s or dementia, Cardinal Court and Greenfield Estates offer support, encouragement and someone to lean on

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Pictured above is the lovely courtyard at Cardinal Court for residents to enjoy the outdoors in a protected environment. (Photography: Benjamin Margalit)

By Beth Newcomb

Guidance, listening, relating from experience. These resources, along with many others, are offered as support services to the communities Cardinal Court (Strongsville area) and Greenfield Estates (Copley area) serve. Cardinal Court and Greenfield Estates are area leaders in helping people with Alzheimer’s and dementia and their families navigate through each stage of progression.

“We serve as a resource to those who need help understanding a new diagnosis, need support during the stages of the disease, and need help determining when or if it’s time for care outside of the home,” says Tiffany Farner, community resource director for Greenfield Estates. Her counterpart, Kimberly Wilfong, enjoys the same role at Cardinal Court.

“When a loved one receives the diagnosis that he or she has Alzheimer’s or dementia, it can be overwhelming to the family,” Kimberly relates.

“There are a lot of questions that need to be answered. Our focus is to offer support wherever that support is needed. It could be months before a loved one is ready for care in one of our communities. How do you navigate in the meantime? That’s where we come in. Our support is available anytime, at no charge. People can visit either of our locations as the need presents itself, without an appointment, and get guidance.”

Both Tiffany and Kimberly have access to outside resources families can tap into. They’re also great listeners, something many people struggling to come to terms with a diagnosis genuinely need.

“Families sometimes just need someone to talk to, someone to help guide them,” Kimberly says. “Nobody should ever have to feel like they’re alone.”

When or if the day comes that your loved one requires the kind of care you’re challenged to provide at home, Cardinal Court and Greenfield Estates are ready to ease the transition. Both locations provide support on an individual basis for residents in a loving and understanding manner. They exclusively offer a program called Meaningful Moments, and it’s tailored to the personal needs of the residents.

“Here, we honor the life story of each person and create meaningful engagements,” Tiffany explains. “We try to help our residents keep their abilities for as long as they can, and if that means they help with folding laundry, or they sand a block of wood to make a plaque, that’s what we do with them. It’s about honoring the memories that exist and validating them.”

The validation technique she’s referring to is part of the Teepa Snow positive approach, and it’s connected to how a resident is greeted, how they’re touched, what kind of body language is used and the tone of voice that’s used.

“Our goal is to set each person up for success,” Kimberly says. “Our approach is to understand what’s going on inside a resident’s brain and then work with it.”

Cardinal Court and Greenfield Estates are designed to resemble the interior of a warm and inviting home. Life stations dot the hallways to help connect residents to the past. Before a new resident establishes him or herself, Kimberly or Tiffany and their teams interview the family to find out what kind of life the person has lived, then his or her story is incorporated into a care plan.

If you do notice changes that could point to Alzheimer’s or dementia, it’s important to be respectful and considerate. Be a good listener, do your due diligence when considering a care facility and tap into the resources available to you at Cardinal Court and Greenfield Estates.

To take a tour of Cardinal Court or Greenfield Estates Alzheimer’s Special Care Centers and experience the difference these dementia care units can make in the life of someone you love, call 440-268-9180 and ask for Kimberly Wilfong at Cardinal Court, 18719 Drake Road, in Strongsville, or Tiffany Farner at Greenfield Estates, 3522 Commercial Drive, in Copley, 330-664-1650. The web address is

Categories: Westside Smart Living