Re-Creative Resources
By Kimberly Grandal, BA, CTRS, ACC, Executive Director
http://www.recreativeresources.com/index.htm
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KIMBERLY GRANDAL
Executive Director
Re-Creative Resources
About Kim

and Executive Director of Re-
Creative Resources, Inc., is a
strong advocate for the field of
Therapeutic Recreation and
Activities, with over fifteen
years of experience working
with the elderly in numerous
management and consultant
positions.  She is an Activity
Consultant Certified and a
Certified Therapeutic
Recreation Specialist. Kim is a
member of the New Jersey
Activity Professionals
Association and the New
Jersey/Eastern Pennsylvania
Therapeutic Recreation
Association.

In 1990, Kim graduated from
William Paterson University
with a BA in Sociology and
later studied gerontology
courses at Union County
College and Therapeutic
Recreation courses at Kean
University. Throughout her
career, Kim has been the
Director of Therapeutic
Recreation for several long-
term care facilities, including
one of NJ’s largest.

In 2006, Kim founded Re-
Creative Resources Inc. She is
a speaker for various state and
local activity associations such
as NJAPA, MOCAP, and
NJACA, as well as the Society
of Licensed Nursing Home
Administrators of NJ. She also
offers lectures for Re-Creative
Resources Inc., local colleges,
and community groups, and
provides consultation and
support to numerous facilities
in the state.

Kim is the editor and writer for
the “The Rec-Room", a
monthly newsletter published
by her company. In addition,
she writes monthly articles for
the Activity Directors Office
newsletter, and has contributed
articles to Creative Forecasting
Magazine, and The
Continuing Care Insite
newsletter.

Kim is a recipient of the
Kessler Institute of
Rehabilitation 1997 Triumph
of the Human Spirit Award.  
Her passion is to promote the
field of Therapeutic
Recreation and Activities and
to unite Recreation Therapists
and Activity Professionals. Kim
currently serves on the NJAPA
board as the Chairperson for
the Legislation Committee.
About
Re-Creative
Resources Inc.

Re-Creative Resources, Inc. is
committed to enhancing the
lives of long-term care
residents through the use of
Therapeutic Recreation. We
provide a variety of services
such as Therapeutic
Recreation seminars,
in-services, resources, form
development, program analysis
and development,
consultation, and support for
activity professionals and
recreational therapists. A
selection of downloadable
training materials and forms
are available for your
convenience as well as a free
job posting site.
How to Write an ImPRESSive Press Release:
An Introduction for Recreation Directors
By Kimberly Grandal BA, CTRS, ACC
Executive Director of Re-Creative Resources Inc.
www.recreativeresources.com

One of the many responsibilities of a Recreation Director is to support the public
relations and marketing strategies of the facility. There are numerous ways in which
Recreation Departments promote the quality of life activities offered. Some common
ways includes: newsletters, flyers, contests, community events, posters, videos,
displays, brochures, health-fairs, staff and family events, promotional products (t-shirts,
mugs, lanyards, etc.), local news and press releases.

Not all facilities have a designated Marketing Director, therefore the Recreation Director
often finds her/himself left with the task of writing press releases for TV, radio or
newsprint media. Although most of us are not trained journalists there are some things
we should consider when taking on this challenge.

First of all, is the topic newsworthy? Since people tend to gravitate toward human
interest stories, recreational services are a prime target for promotional opportunities.
Michael Hotz, LNHA, FACHCA, Administrator at the Health Center at Bloomingdale in
Bloomingdale NJ, states, “Recreation is the sizzle on the steak of life in a Nursing
Home.” There are so many activities, services and events that can be promoted,  some
of which include: pet therapy, Snoezelen, music therapy, Resident Council, community
events, outings, intergenerational events, cultural events, specialty clubs, contests, staff
events, celebrations, pen pal programs, the use of technology and adapted equipment,
special programs (fall-prevention, feeding programs, dementia programs, etc.),
specialty units, special populations, art programs, physical activities (exercise, sports,
tai chi), reminiscence, resident service projects, and so on. The list is endless!

Once the decision is made to promote an activity or service it is important to note that
each press release should be typed on facility letterhead, be double-spaced, and have
an indicated released time (i.e. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE). The headline should
clearly define the content of the story and should be interesting as well as eye-catching.  
In some cases, there may also be a sub-headline. In addition, the appropriate contact
information such as name, facility name, phone number, fax number, email address,
website address, etc. should be clearly stated.

Each press release must have a beginning, middle and end.  The important questions
of: Who? What? When? Where? Why? and How? should be answered. Be sure to give
examples and utilize quotes by pertinent individuals. Tell the story by having the most
important information first and more detailed information in the 2nd paragraph (and 3rd
if applicable).  A summary, and company information is to be included in the last
paragraph. Keep the press release short and to the point and write from the 3rd person,
otherwise known as “the journalist’s perspective”.

Sending a photo with the press release is a great way to increase your chances of
getting some publicity. Although most forms of media accept color photos, black and
white photos are preferred. In addition, write pertinent information on the back of the
photo including the name and address of the person to whom it should be returned to
and the name of who/what is in the photo.  You may also consider writing a caption as
well. Simply type out the caption and paperclip it to the photo. You may not get the entire
press release published, but rather just the photo with caption. As we all know, a
picture is worth a thousand words, so don’t forget to send one with the press release.

A quality recreation program is imperative in marketing strategies. More and more
family members are choosing heath care facilities, based on quality of life as well as
quality of care. So don’t forget your camera. You just may have the next front page story
sitting on your desk!


SAMPLE PRESS RELEASE

The following is a sample press release related to recreation programs in long-term
care. Note: Before writing a press release or any other public relations activity, refer to
your facility administrator, marketing director, etc. to ensure you are following guidelines.



CONTACT                                                               
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Person                                                           
Date
Company Name
Telephone Number
FAX Number
Email Address
Website URL

RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES: A FUN-DAMENTAL COMPONENT IN LONG-TERM CARE

“Activities are the heartbeat of the facility,” a resident in a long-term care facility once
said. The importance of activity in long-term care is just one reason why name of facility
offers a variety of recreational activities that stimulate minds, promote physical fitness,
increase social interaction, teach new skills and, overall, improve the quality of life for all
residents.

At name of facility, residents are engaged in person-centered, meaningful activities,
specially adapted to meet the needs and interests of each resident. For example, the
wide range of therapeutic recreational activities at name of facility include pet therapy,
music therapy, intergenerational programs, community outings, exercise and creative-
expressive programs, cognitively challenging games, cultural programs, clubs and
special events, programs for the cognitively impaired, etc. are just some of the activities
offered.  Programs are offered daily and provided in small, medium and large-sized
groups, as well as on a one to one basis.

The team of professionals at name of facility believes in creating an environment that is
fulfilling, holistic and nurturing for the residents.  For that reason, name of facility has an
inter-disciplinary approach to quality of life.  As an example, the Food and Nutrition
Department hosts a monthly cooking class, in which residents share in the preparation
of their favorite recipes.  Similarly, the  Rehabilitation Department works in conjunction
with the Recreation Department to increase residents’ physical functioning.  Even the
Nursing Department can be found reading the newspaper or singing in the dayroom. In
addition, there are numerous community groups and volunteers that enhance the
quality of life of the residents.

The long-term care industry has changed dramatically over the years.  Now, quality of
life is as equally important as quality of care. Recreational activities have become a
heightened focus of regulatory agencies such as the Centers for Medicare and
Medicaid Services (CMS) and are a FUN-damental component of today’s long-term
care facilities. Name of facility is one of 10 skilled nursing facilities in the xyz
Corporation that provides both short and long-term care and rehabilitation services. For
more information on name of facility, please call (555) 123-456-7890 or visit us on the
web at www.nameoffacility.com.

# # #

For more information about the recreation program at name of facility, call name of
Recreation Director, at 555-123-4567 or email
recreation@nameoffacility.com.
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