Schnurmann House is a non-profit independent living facility for individuals age 62 and over. It is located on six beautiful acres in Mayfield Heights, Ohio.
As we all know, a facility like this is a far cry from the "old-age homes" of yesteryear. This is a place for vibrant, healthy, young-at-heart people. People here take part in many in-house activities including line dancing, exercise classes, book discussion groups, computer classes and travel!
Schnurmann House has a population of approximately 280 people so of course there is a diverse range of interests, likes and dislikes. Right now, there is a great interest in their computer classes and the use of the Internet.
Marcia Rosenthal is Coordinator of Activities at Schnurmann House. She finds there is tremendous enthusiasm brought on by the possibility of contacting family members and friends via email.
Emil Schauer and Harriett Kaminsky help instruct the anxious seniors and walk them through problem areas. Emil's goal is to help as many people keep up with the advances in the computer world as he can. "It's fascinating" he says, "I want to be part of it and I want to help others be part of it too." There are six tutors in all, far less than they could use to assist all of the people eager to learn.
Marian Rosen (80) keeps track of all of the website names she sees and hears about and goes to the sites to see what's going on. She loves to check out sites of all kinds - there's no limit to her curiosity. She emails her daughter and granddaughter. Emil recently used his digital camera to take her picture and send it, via the web, to her granddaughter. How exciting!
Marian has learned a lot in her life and is amazed every day with how much more there is to learn. "The computer has opened my eyes to so many things I've only heard about - and some I never even heard about! I am so happy my grandchildren started learning about this when they were very young."
At 85, Sis Klein wasn't about to let the world pass her by. She heard about the computers and the training and hoped she'd be able to do it. "You have to keep up with technology. You need to know what's going on." Her hopes paid off - she's a real pro on "surfing the net".
Her twin brother was not as anxious as she was to join the computer age. He thought he had enough to do without learning something new. That didn't last long though, once he started, he's hooked too. Now he and Sis email each other and discuss the new sites they've found.
Mary Holstine (70) has family in Chicago and California. Cost-prohibitive phone calls are no longer a concern. Now she can e-mail friends and family anywhere and anytime. She was a little hesitant at first as well, but decided if her four-year-old nephew could do it, so could she!
People come to Schnurmann House because it is a beautiful campus with a good reputation and a good program. Residents can be as involved in activities as they choose, some preferring to remain completely private. But the one thing you cannot help but experience as you walk through the halls is the atmosphere of family. Every one has a kind word for everyone else. Everyone is willing to help out wherever they can and everyone has a smile waiting to be shared.
Thirteen year old Erica Rosenthal is there helping her grandmother. The seniors welcome her and her youth just as she embraces them and the wisdom of their years. Her great-grandmother lived in this house, so she knows first hand of its benevolent feeling.
There are beautiful gardens planted and tended to by the residents, including not only gorgeous flowers but also tomato and other vegetable plants as well! It is truly home for these lucky people.