For more than a decade, Nancy has been leading weekly Spanglish Group get togethers under the auspices of GuildCare, Lighthouse Guild’s Adult Day Healthcare program. Nancy describes the core group of about 20 people as “a warm, supportive, welcoming group that feels like family.” If family is a group that laughs, cries, and reflects together, the Spanglish Group certainly qualifies. Explains Nancy, “We begin each session with a riddle icebreaker that always gets a laugh or a groan, update each other on what’s going on in our lives, and share views on current events.”
The group, which alternates between Spanish and English, has also evolved into a book club whose members enjoy listening to a book and then analyzing the author’s style and purpose. Music is important to group members, who love to sing along to their designated “DJ’s” radio salsa and merengue selections. In addition, at monthly town hall meetings, the Spanglish Group has an opportunity to hear from and provide feedback to GuildCare’s director, thereby influencing Lighthouse Guild programs and policies.
As a former teacher, Nancy was surprised that she wasn’t required to develop weekly lesson plans. But she notes that she does so anyway, and the plans are influenced by the wishes of the group. “This is a really empowered team that benefits from the combination of structure and autonomy that Lighthouse Guild provides,” Nancy says, “and we look forward to continuing to grow and develop together over time.”