NORTH RIVERSIDE, Ill. (WLS) -- It's a happy day for residents at Caledonia Senior Living in North Riverside as their family members can now hug and visit them with 100% of residents having gotten a COVID vaccine.
After over a year of being locked down during this pandemic, residents and workers at Caledonia Senior Living and Memory Care are welcoming back family members in a different way, made possible by shots in arms.
"We've been in the business of protecting physical health and safety and safety for a full year and now we can be in the business of reconnecting families and that's such an important thing. That's what it's all about here," said Gus Noble, president of Caledonia Senior Living.
All of the residents are fully vaccinated and 95 percent of the staff is vaccinated as well like Sue Arends. Her mother, Olive, is a resident and they have been able to be together for months now.
They both know first-hand how special it will be for so many families, now able to embrace one another.
"I am just absolutely thrilled that other family members can experience what I have been able to experience and that is closeness with your loved one being able to give them a hug being able to scratch their back," Arends said. "I am just over the moon about it it's wonderful."
"It's a nice change to see somebody else," Olive Mobed said.
For the first time, visitors are able to physically embrace residents if they are fully masked. In some cases, residents will be able to hug their families for the first time in over a year later.
"Imagine never having the opportunity to hug your loved one for a year the whole world has had this," Noble said. "We are now seeing families reconnecting in the most important way. I mean, there is nothing more important in this life."
North Riverside nursing home resumes visits as 100% of residents get COVID vaccine