While preparations for construction of the pioneering Living Center of Manhattan move forward, Jewish Home staff is engaged in extensive training on The Green House Project® model of care, which will be the core philosophy of this new nursing home and rehabilitation center.

Near 100 staff members have participated in the six-day training sessions, which include the essential tenets of The Green House Project® model, training in LGBT sensitivity based on Jewish Home’s partnership with Services & Advocacy for LGBT Elders (SAGE) and special training in innovative approaches to dementia care. Three core values of meaningful life, real home, and an empowered workforce are woven into the curriculum, with modules on communication, team building, “deep knowing” and relationship building. Ultimately, all Jewish Home staff will be trained.

Staff who have completed this training are already applying their learning to enhance resident lives and their care practices at the existing Manhattan nursing campus.

sofiaZofia Tryjanski, Physical Therapist Supervisor & Care Partner in the Manhattan Rehabilitation Department of Jewish Home shares that her approach to her job has changed since she completed the six-day person-directed care training.

“There is so much different. I try to practice more understanding and patience now. Class was like a “Zen” experience. I hope to take that experience and energy to the elders.”

dannyDaniel Ynoa, Lead Porter and Care Partner in the Manhattan Environmental Service Department said the learning he acquired from the training concerned the elements needed for a solid team.

I took a lot away from the class; mostly that in order for the team to work, we have to take responsibility, be accountable and see the elder as a human being, not a “business”. If any of those elements are missing the team approach fails.”


daphneDaphne Waite, Certified Nurse Aide and “Lighthouse” Care Partner on the Freidman 6 Guided Community of Jewish Home, Manhattan, agrees that the approach to teamwork has changed since the training.

We always worked as a team but it is different now. If we have a disagreement we talk about it together.

Before we would have held resentment and just moved on with our day. Now we don’t walk past elders rooms without helping each other; before if one of my coworkers was behind and did not make their beds for the day, we didn’t help them out. Now we make the beds and help each other with whatever we need.”

Daphne added that since they’ve applied the person-centered approach to dining options they offer resident, the nursing home resident and staff are all delighted.

We love watching the elders drink milkshakes. It’s the best part of the day. Before they would have just had a juice, now we make them their favorite drinks and they tip the cup up until the last sip is gone.”

Jewish Home’s senior management, including President & CEO Audrey Weiner, also participated in a uniquely crafted Green House Project for Executives training. Tammy Marshall, director of the Green House project at Jewish Home explains why this is important.

The education and training is the easy part. Living into the core values and role modeling new behaviors and practices will be the test of The New Jewish Home. Fortunately, leadership has done its homework and knows that management behavior sets the tone and stage for empowering and supporting the workforce; we are off to a great start.

micehlineNot only has the training enhanced the lives of nursing home residents, elements of the training have been personally empowering for Jewish Home staff. Micheline Amazan, RN and “Lighthouse” CarePartner/Nurse Manager, Frank 4 & 5 at Jewish Home, Manhattan shared a very personal story about how the exercises in the six-day training changed the way she relates to her daughter.

One of the most unexpected things that happened is a change in my relationship with my daughter, Ornella. I am from Haiti, in Haiti children are seen and not heard. You must obey your parents, no questions asked. This is the way I raised my children.

However, one day after training I asked my daughter to clean her room. She began to yell and complain, she said things like “I don’t listen to her” and that “I don’t know who she really is.”

In the past I would have “gotten on her” I would have yelled back and made her clean her room. This time it was different, when she spoke and said I didn’t listen – I stopped and “pulled back.” Pulling back is one of the skills I learned in class. I listened to her differently, I did not “get on her” I did not yell back – I listened. I think my daughter was in shock. I think I was too. For the first time I really listened to what Ornella was saying to me, what was in her heart.”

The six-day training sessions in The Green House Project method will continue as plans to begin construction of The Living Center progress.