Residents and staff at the Berwick House in Gordon Head came together to sing “This Little Light of Mine” by Harry Dixon Loes in a music video sent to their families. (Screenshot from the music video via Berwick Retirement Communities)

Residents and staff at the Berwick House in Gordon Head came together to sing “This Little Light of Mine” by Harry Dixon Loes in a music video sent to their families. (Screenshot from the music video via Berwick Retirement Communities)

Saanich seniors, care home staff create “This Little Light of Mine” music video to raise spirits amid the pandemic

Video sent to residents’ families as visits not permitted

Residents and staff at the Berwick House location in Gordon Head let their positivity shine in “This Little Light of Mine” music video sent to families as visits have been suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Berwick Retirement Communities staff have been working hard to keep spirits high at all eight care home locations in B.C. during the pandemic. Proactive precautions were taken to limit non-essential visits at the facilities back in early-March in an effort to keep residents and staff from contracting the virus, explained Victoria-based Berwick spokesperson Lesley Sikorski.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Vancouver Island retirement community answers dance-off challenge

She noted that residents have taken an active role in keeping one another safe and effort has been made to keep their families in the loop.

This week, Saanich Berwick House residents and staff decided to find a creative way to let their friends and family know they’re doing well and are in positive spirits. The group put together a music video of various residents and staff singing “This Little Light of Mine,” a gospel song written by hymn writer Harry Dixon Loes in the 1920s. The video was then sent out to residents’ friends and family members.

READ ALSO: Greater Victoria retirement homes limit non-essential visits, take safety precautions

“Everyone had fun doing it,” Sikorski said. She pointed out that it was a heartwarming way to reassure families and show them that residents are “still having fun.”

Some residents even brought out instruments which she said was an unplanned surprise. The whole project was a great way to take residents’ minds off of the doom and gloom.

The goal is to start doing a music video once every few weeks now because those who didn’t participate in the first one are now wanting to join in on the fun. They’re already working on a new song, she said.

READ ALSO: Multinational trial for COVID-19 treatment comes to Vancouver Island

“Music brings people together,” Sikorski explained. “It’s that human solidarity.”

She added that the video was also a nice way to show seniors anxiously waiting to move in that while their move-in dates may have been postponed, everyone is so excited to have them join the community.

Sikorski is hopeful that residents at other Berwick Retirement Community locations will join in on the singing too. The Qualicum Beach location has weekly socially distanced dance parties and recently issued a dance challenge to the other locations so she’s hopeful a singing challenge can be issued too.

“It brings a warmth to your heart” and acts as a good reminder that “we’re all in this together,” she said.

This feel-good story is part of the #WereInThisTogether campaign by Black Press Media. Have an uplifting story that you think would bring joy to readers? E-mail your story, photos and videos to wereinthistogether@blackpress.ca.


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