Baycrest, Accreditation Canada, Leading Practice

Family Mentor Program at Baycrest celebrated as a Leading Practice

Francie Kendal, Accreditation Canada, Leading Practice

Francie Kendal, lead of the Family Mentor Program at Baycrest, receives a volunteer award from the United Jewish Appeal of Greater Toronto for her work on the program.

Designed to help to alleviate some of the stress and anxiety that many families feel when moving a loved one to a long-term care home, the Family Mentor Program at Baycrest has been recognized as a Leading Practice by Accreditation Canada.

When a new client receives a room at the Apotex Centre, Jewish Home for the Aged at Baycrest, a dedicated group of volunteers call their families to discuss the admission process, address their concerns and, as needed, make referrals to appropriate staff members.

Janis Sternhill, director of Volunteer Services at Baycrest, says the volunteers help to provide a sense of comfort to clients’ families. “Many people don’t know what to expect when they’re coming to a long-term care home. Our program allows families to speak with someone who has gone through an experience similar to their own, which helps to alleviate a great deal of stress.”

In 2016, more than 110 families were called by volunteers to introduce them to Baycrest and to ensure that their loved ones’ transition to their new home was a positive experience. With this recognition from Accreditation Canada, Sternhill says she hopes that other healthcare organizations adopt their program.

To learn more or join the Family Mentor Program at Baycrest, visit