Eastern Iowans hike mountain for long-term care awareness - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Eastern Iowans hike mountain for long-term care awareness

GUTTENBERG (KWWL) - Next month, a group from Guttenberg is hoping to raise awareness of a type of long-term care by climbing a mountain.

They're hoping small steps add up to a big change.

Brian Sorenson has two new knees.

Reconstructive surgery last year brought him a new challenge this year.

"I want to take these two artificial knees to the top of the mountain. It's a personal challenge for me to do that," said Sorenson.

He's one of 57 people who are part of Team Dignity.

The team plans to hike to the top of colorado's highest mountain, Mt. Elbert.

It's to raise awareness for person directed care at long-term care facilities.

"We want to celebrate the individual. Instead of having someone that moves into a care center conform to our medical model and our institutional procedures, we're going to have them choose their day their way and match their lifestyle," says Guttenberg Care Center administrator Janette Simon.

She says that means waking up when you want and eating what you want when you want.

But for Team Dignity, they need training for the 10 hour hike at high altitude.

"The mountain is a metaphor for what it takes to change an ingrained kind of practice that the medical model we've operated from in traditional nursing homes and we're going to put forth that effort and raise that awareness to make things change," said Simon.

Meantime, Brian Sorenson looking forward to reaching the top.

"It's definitely a challenge for me to see that challenge and try to take and prepare for that challenge and hopefully, I can summit with the other wonderful people that are going along," said Sorenson.

The group makes their climb Sept. 6th in Colorado.

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