Otterbein Marblehead Otterbuddy Program Inspires Friendship and Connection

Posted on: October 10, 2023

Moving to a senior living community can be intimidating and even scary, and it’s common for many new residents to feel nervous about making friends. Otterbein Marblehead understands how a new community can be overwhelming at times. That’s why we’ve designed the Otterbuddy program to help residents feel more comfortable and connected.

Watch the video below to learn more about this program and see it in action with residents Judy and Julia. Then, continue reading to find additional details about the Otterbuddy program and our community.

Explore the Otterbuddy Program at Otterbein Marblehead

Before moving in, many residents ask what the people are like at Otterbein Marblehead and if it will be hard to make friends. It’s normal to get those jitters, just like when you were a new kid at school.

Moving to a senior living community is a significant life change that can bring about several emotions. It’s important to find a way to process those feelings so you can fully enjoy the active, independent senior living lifestyle.

“An Otterbuddy is someone who is a resident here on campus who’s going to get you acclimated to your new home,” said Marketing Director Mollie Rauscher. “They will teach you how to put in a work order, order in the dining room, or just get the lay of the land. We try to ease any worries about what it’s like to move into a new community.”

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Meet Otterbuddy Judy and New Resident Julia

“The Otterbuddy program pairs new residents and existing residents that have a common interest like our friends, Judy and Julia,” said Mollie. “They were both nurses for their careers, so we paired them together, and they formed a wonderful friendship.”

Resident Judy is a volunteer Otterbuddy, and she was recently matched with resident Julia, who is new to both the area and the Otterbein Marblehead community.

“I’m the Otterbuddy to Julia,” said Judy. “She’s new in town and doesn’t know a thing about Marblehead or Ohio. She came from Pennsylvania.”

“When I first came here, I thought this would work out wonderfully because I can go to Judy and say, ‘Hey, what does this really mean?’” said Julia.

Julia was ready to get out and meet new people shortly after she moved to Otterbein Marblehead. This made Judy’s job easier, and they found they had much in common in the process.

“We’re both nurses, which makes a big connection right there,” said Judy. “We visit every day.”

“If I’m going with my daughter for a doctor’s appointment or to have my blood drawn, I let Judy know that I’m going to be gone because I think it’s important that somebody knows where you are,” said Julia.

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Three friends sitting on a bench enjoying the lake.

Discover What They Love Most About Otterbein Marblehead

As new residents adjust to community life, they often quickly discover what they love most about living here.

“My favorite thing about living here is the safety and that I’m doing no cooking,” said Julia. “I thoroughly enjoy the new restaurant.”

Although many residents enjoy not having to cook anymore, you can still prepare meals or bake in your kitchen in independent living.

“I’m the opposite [of Julia] because I’m still enjoying cooking,” said Judy. “My favorite thing about living here is the people — the others that you are friends with that you never knew you’d be friends with. That makes it very enjoyable.”

Living in a continuing care retirement community like Otterbein Marblehead means you can access care when needed. The services and amenities can bring peace of mind to residents and their loved ones.

“I have two daughters who are both extremely pleased that I’m safe — it’s a comfort to my daughters as well that I’m looked after now,” added Julia.

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Live an Active Lifestyle at Otterbein Marblehead

Otterbein Marblehead offers a shuttle that transports residents to many fun events, restaurants, and attractions in the area. Residents love going to concerts, playing bocce ball, and exploring the unique offerings of the local community.

Learn more about things to do near Marblehead and on our campus in this blog.