Imagine traveling around the world from the comfort of your home. The residents at The Hearth at Drexel don’t need to imagine such travel—they’ve taken part in it since 2017. The creation of the Passports to Paradise program creates a virtual armchair travel adventure that combines memory and imagination for residents at The Hearth.
“A former staff member created Passports to Paradise,” says Jessica Buck, director of community life at The Hearth at Drexel. “This idea really made an impact, and we continue to create and facilitate this program because residents have shared that they still feel eager to learn and discuss worldly topics. Residents bring their passports to each presentation for stamping as they are taken on a journey to different countries around the world,” Jessica explains.
Virtual travel involves lectures about the history of each country, the culture, and notable statistics. Residents also experience the local cuisine. Additionally, each presentation features a special beverage or dish from the selected country.
Because many residents have already visited these destinations in-person, Passports to Paradise allows residents to share their personal experiences, reminisce about the past, highlight what they most enjoyed about their trip, and educate their peers.
“My favorite part of the Passports to Paradise program was getting together with the other residents to share stories of our favorite places to travel,” Don, a group member, shares. Nancy, another group member, enjoys the learning aspect of the program. “Even if I had been to the country in-person, there is always more to learn,” she adds.
The Passports to Paradise group has virtually traveled to different cities in the United States, the beautiful Caribbean, North & South Africa, Greece, Ireland, Spain, the British Isles, Italy, and Japan. The virtual trip to Ireland especially delighted Don as he shares, “I would have loved to have made it to Ireland in-person to golf.”
This idea really made an impact, and we continue to create and facilitate this program because residents have shared that they still feel eager to learn and discuss worldly topics. Residents bring their passports to each presentation for stamping as they are taken on a journey to different countries around the worldJessica B., director of community life at The Hearth at Drexel
The local cuisine usually makes a lasting impression. “I always enjoyed trying the specialized food associated with each country,” Gracie, another group member, reflects. Nancy agrees that the food is a nice treat.
“Residents truly benefit from the camaraderie of their fellow neighbors, sharing personal stories, memories, and recalling past events,” Jessica reveals. “They love trying new foods and listening to the interesting facts presented,” she adds.
Passports to Paradise lets residents travel, learn, and imagine together. After all, travel feels more memorable with a friend. At The Hearth at Drexel, residents always travel with friends.