Senior Choice at Home members joined Gulf Coast Village residents in receiving their first doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine on Wednesday.

Through a partnership with Walgreens, Volunteers of America – sponsors of Gulf Coast Village and Senior Choice at Home – was able to secure vaccines at no cost to residents and members. Each person was assigned appointment times to eliminate the potential for long waits.

“We have gone through an incredible journey since March 12,” said Kevin Ahmadi, area director of operations for Volunteers of America. “We have done an amazing job mitigating the risk, keeping the virus out of our community and away from our residents.”

Gulf Coast Village was among the first senior communities in Florida to restrict campus access and implement new safety protocols, which included sanitization procedures, employee health screenings and requirements for wearing personal protective equipment.

The latest step was securing vaccines for all residents and members.

Lois Faulkner was the first Senior Choice at Home member to receive the vaccine on Wednesday, saying the process was both smooth and pain-free.

“We’ve been wanting to get the vaccine primarily to be safe, to be able to go see our family sometime,” Faulkner said.

An hour later, Diane Wolfe became the first Gulf Coast Village resident to be vaccinated. She receives her annual flu shot when Walgreens makes house calls to the community, and knew that strong relationship would help bring the COVID-19 vaccine to Gulf Coast Village. Wolfe said she’s remained in good health during the pandemic because the community has been vigilant about resident and staff safety.

“As careful as we have been here, I was not worried that I was going to get sick,” Wolfe said.

Gulf Coast Village is Cape Coral’s premier Continuing Care Retirement Community and offers independent living, assisted living, specialized memory support, skilled nursing, home health and rehabilitation services. Senior Choice at Home is a continuing care at home program that provides comprehensive long-term care and personal concierge care services for older adults who wish to live independently at home.

Ahmadi said his New Year’s wish for 2021 was for “herd immunity.” As someone who works in the health sector, Ahmadi said it was important to receive the vaccine to help protect himself and others.

“It was painless. I didn’t even feel the needle,” Ahmadi said. “I encourage everyone in the medical community to seek the opportunity to be vaccinated so that we can move forward and hopefully get back to some level of normalcy in communities around this country.”

About Gulf Coast Village

Founded in 1989, Gulf Coast Village is the premier Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) in Cape Coral, Florida. Residents enjoy active living in an unparalleled lifestyle of comfort and convenience with a rich array of services and amenities that are focused on living well. The community also offers the security of knowing there is a full continuum of care, including independent living, assisted living, specialized memory support, skilled nursing, home health, rehabilitation services and Senior Choice at Home, a continuing care at home program. Gulf Coast Village is located at 1333 Santa Barbara Blvd., Cape Coral, FL 33991. For more information, call 239-772-1333 or visit GulfCoastVillage.com.

About Senior Choice at Home

Senior Choice at Home is a membership-based program that provides comprehensive long-term care and personal concierge care services for older adults enabling them to live independently at home while protecting their financial assets. Senior Choice at Home is regulated by the state of Florida as a premier Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) “without walls” and is affiliated with Volunteers of America, a faith-based non-profit organization dedicated to helping those in need rebuild their lives and reach their full potential. To register for a seminar in Lee or Collier counties and discover all of the benefits that being a member of Senior Choice at Home offers, visit SeniorChoiceAtHome.com or call 239-362-9153.

About Volunteers of America

Volunteers of America is a national, nonprofit, faith-based organization dedicated to helping those in need live healthy, safe and productive lives. Since 1896, VOA’s ministry of service has supported and empowered America’s most vulnerable groups, including veterans, seniors, people with disabilities, at-risk youth, men and women returning from prison, homeless individuals and families, those recovering from addictions and many others. Through hundreds of human service programs, including housing and health care, Volunteers of America helps almost 1.5 million people in over 400 communities. For more information about Volunteers of America, visit VolunteersofAmerica.org.