Celebrating a birthday in style during COVID-19
Adorned in a custom birthday sash, Hope Residence resident Shannon could barely contain her excitement as car after car drove by during her special birthday parade. A parade might not have been what Shannon had in mind to celebrate this year, but the experience is something she will never forget.
Team members were inspired to plan the parade for Shannon after seeing several news stories about others celebrating birthdays and major milestones with parades while in quarantine.
With approval from Shannon’s family and Judy Vogel, Shannon’s program manager at Hope, word of the parade spread quickly. Through social media, family and friends were encouraged to join the fun. But the plan remained a secret to Shannon.
“She had no idea what to expect,” said Brenda, a team member at Hope.
The parade started off with Shannon’s dad in his big work truck and continued as nearly 50 decorated vehicles passed by. The smile never left Shannon’s face as she continued to stand up and wave as people drove by wishing her a happy birthday.
“It brought tears to my eyes to see how happy she was and how many people who know and love her showed up,” said Becca, a team member at Hope.
Pulling off the parade was a group effort, as several team members and residents helped to decorate signs leading up to the parade.
“Shannon’s family was instrumental. If they had not been involved and showed an outpouring of support, the parade would not have occurred,” said Judy. “The whole experience was very heartwarming and brought so much joy not only to Shannon but also everyone involved.”
During a difficult time filled with many changes, Hope team members have been creative in their efforts to see the residents happy.
Hope Residence is a vibrant community featuring spirited residents and team members. Learn more about the disability housing community at myhopebp.org.