SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. — This Mother’s Day, The Gardens of Social Circle found an innovative way to bring families together to celebrate.

They were able to accomplish this while adhering to isolation guidelines recommended by both the state and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A parade consisting of the residents’ families was held Sunday and was led off by personnel from the Social Circle Fire Department who graciously brought SCFD Engine 6.

“We wanted to find a way to allow families to celebrate Mother’s Day with our residents but keep everyone safe” Rebecca Bernard, assistant executive director of The Gardens, said.

About 25 cars filled with friends and family, some decorated with banners and balloons, paraded past residents who were practicing social distancing and in full CDC compliance to wish them a Happy Mother’s Day.

Activity Director Valencia Lee organized this creative and safe event as way to let families show their love and appreciation. Residents were given facemasks and brought out to view the parade while maintaining a minimum of 6 feet apart.

Nursing homes and assisted living facilities across the nation have been particularly hard hit with the illness, so the CDC has placed stringent facility guidelines to prevent its spread throughout those vulnerable populations.

Despite the governor’s office lifting the stay-at-home order for some of the state’s population, both nursing homes and assisted living homes remain under a strict lock-down policy to protect their residents.

The Gardens has not allowed standard visitation by friends or family since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic as mandated by the state and CDC.

To this date, no staff or residents of the facility have contracted the disease.

“This is a very different Mother’s Day,” Grant Williams, executive director, said. “Our number one priority is the safety of our residents and staff, so we had to get creative to celebrate the amazing moms and women we have here at The Gardens of Social Circle.

“The parade was such a hit. Our residents, families and even staff enjoyed being able to connect to each other at a safe distance.

“I saw so many smiles and so many tears of joy, it truly was something special.”