On The Forefront – November 2022

Click here to read the Forefront Living newsletter for November 2022.

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“At the Forefront” Podcast: Season Two | Episode Two | OAW Future Resident Panel

About This Episode: In this episode, host Tim Mallad welcomes special guest Jennifer Campbell, Marketing and Sales Director for The Outlook at Windhaven (OAW), and a panel of future OAW residents, comprised of VIPs Jane Bower and Lisa and Joseph Raymond, to discuss Forefront Living’s newest Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) currently under construction in Plano, Texas. Jennifer shares several factors to consider when selecting a senior living community, including convenience of location and organizational strength through favorable reputation and financial stability. Additionally, panel guests provide testimonials as to why they selected OAW for their retirement home and discuss what makes this new community perfectly fitting for their changing needs as they age. Join us for this very special podcast intended to help educate audience members as they navigate the journey of selecting a senior living community.

About The Outlook at Windhaven: Scheduled to open its doors in 2024 and located in the desirable area of West Plano, The Outlook at Windhaven will be a gated community offering 153 independent living apartment homes, 30 independent living cottage homes, 32 assisted living apartment homes and 24 memory support suites. The independent living apartments will feature 14 unique floor plans ranging from 900-1,950 square feet. The independent living cottages will feature two distinct floor plan options ranging from 1,800-2,000 square feet and will include front porches, private courtyards and attached garages. Additionally, the campus will showcase a state-of-the-art clubhouse with multiple dining options, a robust fitness center and other desirable lifestyle amenities.

Watch below or listen on Spotify or Apple.

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Forefront Living Foundation partners with AmazonSmile

As holiday shopping gears up, please remember you can shop online while giving back to your favorite charity, Forefront Living Foundation.

You can support Forefront Living Foundation by shopping on AmazonSmile. It is easy to support Forefront Living Foundation every time you shop, at no cost to you.

When you shop AmazonSmile, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added benefit that AmazonSmile will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to the charitable organization of your choice.

All donations made through AmazonSmile will help provide much-needed benevolent care and unfunded services for residents, patients, children and families.

Just follow these steps to get started:

• Visit smile.amazon.com

• Login to Amazon or register for an account

• Select Forefront Living Foundation

• Then start shopping! Based on your purchases, AmazonSmile will donate to Forefront Living Foundation

For more information about how you can shop and save, click here.

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First Impressions Lunch and Learn

Each month, Forefront Living teammates gather during their lunch break to participate in educational training sessions and informational presentations called “Lunch and Learns.”

This month, Scott Polzin, Chief Operating Officer, and Ke’o Velasquez, Corporate Director of Operations, jointly presented on the lasting influence of first impressions. They shared with their peers that the perception of teammates, as well as an organization’s overall impression, are equally crucial factors in any customer-service business. Utilizing their professional experiences in the senior living industry, Scott and Ke’o discussed how creating a positive organizational first impression targets the five senses, specifically relating to a facility’s exterior and interior appearance and ambience. Examples of positive community impressions stemmed from attractive and clear signage, well-maintained landscaping and calming water features, interior cleanliness and pleasant aromas. In relation to teammate first impressions, giving a welcoming smile, presenting a professional attire, having a firm handshake, a polite tone and the ability to maintain eye contact are assured approaches to make a lasting, positive impact on those we serve.

Ke’o Velasquez was recently interviewed by Experience Care, who wrote the following story about him joining Forefront Living and the experience he brings:

A Dining Experience Like No Other

Written by: Elijah Oling Wanga and Cameron Zargar

For over fifty years, Forefront Living has embraced innovation, evolution, and raising the bar in long-term care, serving seniors in the Dallas area through its senior living and hospice services. In keeping with that identity, Forefront Living took a major step toward transforming the diet of seniors by hiring a world-class chef, Keo Velasquez, to be its director of corporate operations. 

Leadership knew that Velasquez, who previously prepared gourmet dishes for hotels, restaurants, and a catering business, would be able to provide seniors a dining experience like no other. Velasquez famously appeared on Experience Care’s LTC Heroes to discuss his innovative approach to improving the dining experience in long-term care settings:

The Director of Corporate Operations at Forefront Living continues to push the boundaries of long-term care dining knowing that he has the support of leadership and a team that is similarly determined to change the culinary experience in the industry. “I push my managers to think more and to think outside the box,” he said. “This isn’t about me being the boss. It’s about what we’re going to get as a team. It’s about creating a list of to-do items and figuring out what needs to get done.”

When designing menus, Velasquez considers the experiences of both residents and their family members. That is because he knows very well that the best food is that which is shared with loved ones. By using fresher ingredients, subtle flavors, and recipes that intrigue and tantalize the palettes of its residents, Forefront Living provides a culinary experience like no other long-term care community. 

And Velasquez and his team have no plans of slowing down any time soon. “We’re going to keep trying things until we’re told that that doesn’t work,” he said. “We want to appeal to multiple generations to ensure that we create a great culture here at Forefront Living.”

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PVN Teammates Celebrate at Town Hall Meeting

Presbyterian Village North (PVN) teammates gathered in the McGowan Auditorium on November 3 for the first Town Hall meeting since the pandemic began. During the meeting, teammates were recognized for their years of service, with Leonard Johnson, Utility Steward, winning the prize for the longest tenure – an impressive 40 years at PVN! Throughout his career, Leonard has become known for his selfless service, positive attitude and humble mentorship.

In addition to celebrating tenure, two stellar teammates and one incredible department were acknowledged for receiving a “Moment Maker” award. Residents, families and teammates are encouraged to complete a “Moment Maker” form to describe a teammate’s effort and the core value they have shown through their actions. Once the form is completed, it is submitted to PVN leadership, who make special mention of their success during group meetings, such as the Town Hall.

Each team member who attended the Town Hall meeting received a raffle ticket to enter a drawing for various prizes including dart boards, coffee makers, a George Foreman grill and more. Resident representatives selected and announced the lucky, winning numbers.

Interspersed through heartfelt words of thanks from members of leadership, teammates flexed their competitive muscles with rousing games of flip cup, cup stacking and corn hole. While there were distinct winners of each event, the entire teammate population came out on top because they were able to enjoy each other’s company in a fun environment – a morale boost for all! To commemorate the event, every teammate in attendance received a pair of sunglasses representing the bright future of PVN.

Teammate Town Hall meetings will take place each quarter and will include team building activities, leadership training, company-wide updates, recognition, prizes and more fun!

To join the PVN family, click here to be notified of open positions.

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Faith Kids and Camp Faith Offer Fun Volunteer Opportunities

Would you like to make a positive difference in the lives of those in our community? Do you enjoy being a role model and support system for children? Are you at least 18 years old?

If you answered “yes” to these three questions, the Faith Presbyterian Hospice (FPH) Child and Family Bereavement Program has immediate opportunities, open to the public, to volunteer to assist with Faith Kids and Camp Faith. 

FPH’s Child and Family Bereavement Program provides a safe and nurturing environment where children can express themselves through art, therapeutic music, writing, dramatic and physical play in the Child Bereavement Center on the FPH campus. Volunteers will assist the facilitators in group activities and give support to children, teens and/or their caregivers, who are grieving the death of a loved one. 

While each participant has experienced a significant loss, these meetings are filled with joy. During each session, volunteers will encounter mostly laughter, smiles, singing, creativity, silliness and a lot of energy as each gathering is intended to be a fun and uplifting experience. This program (serving ages 3-18) is not counseling or therapy, however volunteers must be comfortable with providing empathetic listening and appropriate emotional support (as needed) to the participants.

Below are the current volunteer opportunities:

  • Faith Kids: Ongoing Monthly Support Group: Meets the second Thursday of each month |volunteers needed from 6-9 p.m. (a 9-month commitment is requested to provide continuity for the children) **Faith Kids does not meet during the month of December due to camp.**
  • Camp Faith: Saturday, December 3 |volunteers needed from 8:30 a.m.-2:00 p.m. (one-time commitment)  

To learn more or sign up to participate contact Patricia Cree, FPH Child Life Specialist, via text at (469) 909-8806 or email at pcree@forefrontliving.org.

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What’s Cookin’ at PVN?

These photos represent a small portion of the delicious meals served to residents and their guests by Presbyterian Village North’s culinary team each day.

Click here to follow Chef Kevin Neff on Instagram and swoon over delectable creations he posts almost daily!

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Connect with us on Social Media

Did you know a great way to keep up with the goings on of each Forefront Living entity is to follow our social media accounts? Updates are posted often.





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Podcasts 101

What is a Podcast?

In simple terms, a podcast is a series of audio episodes. It’s like the radio, but on-demand, and you usually listen on your iPhone, Android, or another mobile device.

Tell me more…

A podcast is the streaming age’s answer to radio. The dictionary definition of a podcast is a digital audio file you can download or listen to over the Internet. Its interesting history explains why it is called a podcast, to begin with. 

Podcasts are a form of media content that was developed in 2004, when former MTV video jockey Adam Curry and software developer Dave Winer coded the “iPodder.” The iPodder was a program that let a user download internet radio broadcasts to their Apple iPod. This is where the term and meaning podcast was born, taking its name from a blend of ‘iPod’ and ‘broadcasts’. 

Today, podcasts are an extremely popular form of audio entertainment and have progressed beyond being downloadable radio shows. Each podcast is a series created by a host and then published episode-by-episode online, where subscribers can then download and listen to each episode when it’s released.

Unlike traditional methods of content production like TV and radio shows, podcasts are an accessible way for content creators to connect with an audience. They’re not even currently regulated, meaning you don’t need a broadcasting license to publish podcast content. Anyone with basic podcast equipment like a microphone, recording software, and a membership to a hosting platform can create their own show.

Are Podcasts Audio or Video?

Podcasts started out as a completely audio medium. However, with the growing popularity of podcasts, many podcasters have embraced video podcasting as a way to stand out and reach an even bigger audience. 

Video is extremely popular—in fact, users are averaging 19 hours per week watching online videos in 2022 which is almost 50% more from 2018. So podcast creators who want their show to see the most growth and appeal to wider audiences are adding video elements to their podcasts.

What Is the Purpose of a Podcast?

A podcast can have many purposes, but the main one is to entertain its audience. Podcast listeners might have one of several reasons to subscribe to a podcast, such as to:

  • Hear updates and breakdowns of current events.
  • Learn about a new topic or industry.
  • Laugh at cohosts’ riffing and jokes.
  • Listen in on interviews with popular or famous guests.
  • Experience an audio drama or narrative storytelling. 

But behind each of these reasons is the desire to be entertained. Whether listeners want to learn something new or simply have something to take their minds off of a mundane task, they want to enjoy the experience of listening to a podcast. 

Conversational Podcasts

The most common podcast format is the conversational one. These are generally the most informal style, with anywhere from solo hosts to a roundtable discussion. Many of these shows are interview podcasts, which are discussions between one or more hosts and their guests, usually diving deep into the guests’ personal history or expert knowledge on a topic.

Stuff You Should Know is a very popular example of a conversational podcast. Hosts Chuck and Josh spend each episode educating each other (and the audience) about a topic of general interest. Their style is extremely informal, and listening to SYSK feels like listening in on a chill conversation between two friends.

How Podcasts Work and How to Listen to Podcasts

For podcasters, the process of creating and publishing a podcast is relatively easy. Once they’ve recorded and edited a few episodes, they need to upload them to their podcast host of choice. 

Then, podcasters submit their show’s RSS feed to podcast directories like Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or Stitcher. These directories are the place where podcasts and listeners connect; users can find, subscribe to, and listen to podcasts using their favorite podcast directory.

If you want to listen to podcasts, you’ll need to choose a directory first. There are many options available, but some of the most popular include:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Google Podcasts
  • Spotify
  • Stitcher
  • Overcast
  • Podcast Addict

Some podcast directories have advanced customization functions, like multiple playlists, sleep timers, smart playlists, and suggestions for new shows based on your interests.

Whichever directory you choose, start by downloading the app from the Apple App Store or Google Play. Use the app’s search function to look for shows you might be interested in. You can listen to a single episode immediately, download it for later, or subscribe to shows so that each new episode is added to your playlist.

Who is listening to podcasts?

More than half of the U.S. population has listened to a podcast in the last month, according to Statista, and the largest age group is listeners between 12 and 34 years old.

And listeners are increasing in diversity, as well. 43% of U.S. men and 39% of U.S. women listen to podcasts—and the racial and ethnic makeup of podcast listeners in the U.S. closely reflects the overall diversity of the population.

Why does Forefront Living have a podcast?

The At The Forefront podcast was created to shine a light on ways older adults can live active, happy, fulfilling and thriving lives by addressing a wide variety of topics that matter most to those we serve.

Watch the first season of Forefront Living’s podcast, At the Forefront, here.

View photos from a few At the Forefront podcast episodes below.

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