We’re not a retirement facility. Here’s why.

When it comes to senior living, terms and jargon can often be thrown around like vocabulary soup.

Nursing homes, assisted living facilities, retirement homes and old folks’ places are just a few of the classic culprits.

However, having now practiced marketing in the senior living industry for nearly 30 years, I can confidently say what we at Buckner Retirement Services are and what we are not.

We are not a facility.

A facility is defined as, “something designed, built or installed to serve a specific function affording a convenience or service.”

It’s transactional, functional and institutional. It lacks heart, character and story—the very things that mark the heartbeat of Buckner senior living communities.

Unlike a facility, a community is defined as “a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common” and, “a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.”

The emphasis is on the people, the commonalities they share and the fellowship they enjoy.

While we certainly pride ourselves in the services and amenities we offer, what makes Buckner communities distinct is the people: the residents and staff who call Buckner home.

It’s not uncommon for seniors to move to a Buckner community—whether to independent living, assisted living, memory care, long-term or skilled nursing—and see vast improvement in life satisfaction almost immediately. Their lives are uplifted just by joining a community that cares for, sees and values them.

With a community, you’re part of something. You have a purpose, a reason to get out of bed every morning. You belong. Facilities just don’t do that.

I’ll never forget the senior adults I’ve met during my time at Buckner, the stories they’ve shared and the mark they’ve left on me. I feel like I belong to something bigger and better than myself.

That’s what community is all about.

Dida Horton serves as the Senior Director of Marketing and Sales for Buckner Retirement Services. She’s been with Buckner since 2002.

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