Highlighting Shahbaz, Darlene Scott at Porter Hills Green House homes

By / Posted on May 13th, 2015

Empathy, compassion, honor and respect are just a few of the qualities required in those working with elders in THE GREEN HOUSE® homes. These qualities are extremely evident in Darlene Scott, a Shahbaz at the Porter Hills Green House homes in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

2Darlene has worked at Porter Hills since 1998 when she was hired as a certified nursing assistant in the Health and Rehab Center. After a short period of time, she was promoted to Unit Clerk and continued to prove she had the personality and skills needed to build strong and trusting relationships with residents. This ability to connect with those she served opened the door to a position as an activity coordinator.

While in this new role, Darlene took advantage of many educational opportunities to develop and hone her skills. This included becoming a Certified Eden Associate1

When Porter Hills decided to build two Green House® homes, Darlene was encouraged to consider working as a Shahbaz. “When I was presented with the opportunity to be a part of Green House® homes I thought, this is it, this is living out everything I have been trained to do. I had retained my CNA license which meant I qualified, so I decided to pursue this role that embodied my passion for elders.”

Darlene has worked as a Shahbaz since September of 2009 and enjoys the person-centered approach and the strong relationships developed. She has seen first-hand the impact that this unique approach to skilled care has on elders in the home.

“We had an elder who moved in with late stage dementia. She was high acuity, didn’t walk or talk, and was total care. Her son brought her here and told us that the doctor had said she had 6 months to a year left to live. The son wanted his mom to have the best care possible and he knew that it would be through the Green House® homes at Porter Hills. His mother had already been receiving care but he wanted her to have the ‘best of the best’. She moved in and initially didn’t talk and needed to be coaxed to eat. One day, I was leading a time of discussion and questions and asked about favorite colors. As we were going around the room hearing each elders’ answer, she raised her head and said, ‘my favorite color is yellow’. After that day she began to feed herself again and communicate. To me that signified living because with a lot of elderly people, eating is the last thing they have control of. Not eating can be their way of saying ‘I’m done’. For her to show that she was going to feed herself and was going to live again was a defining moment for me. I realized in that moment, that the concept of the Green House homes was not just a theory. This works, this is where people want to come to continue living no matter what stage of life they are at.”

3Darlene’s primary role in the home is to protect, sustain, and nurture the elders living there by providing assistance with activities of daily living and meeting other needs as required. “We are given the time and atmosphere to develop relationships with the elders and their families. It’s a wonderful place to work. This is a great community and Porter Hills is a great organization. Having The Green House homes and supporting them as a business, Porter Hills shows that we are here for elders, we are here for the geriatric population, and we are here to provide them with the best services and the best life that they can live.”

The rewards are not only felt by the elders in the community. “When you walk out of the door, despite the ups and downs, you know that you have made a difference. These elders could be living anywhere and not getting the care and relationships that they have here. But, they are HERE and we can give them that. It’s very rewarding.”


Celebrating the service of WWII Nurse, June Rolinson!

By / Posted on July 11th, 2012

June Rolinson, WWII Nurse living at The Presbyterian Villages of Michigan, Redford Campus.

During the month of July when we celebrate our nation’s independence, it’s also a time to honor those who have served in our military preserving our freedom over the years.  92 year old June Rolison, a WWII Army Nurse, is one of those individuals.  “I just wanted to take care of people”, that’s how June described her decision to become a nurse.  June currently resides in the “Redford House”, a Green House home on the Presbyterian Villages of Michigan Redford Campus.

June had hoped to be stationed overseas, but she spent her time in Army hospitals in Virginia working with wounded soldiers.  “The servicemen were great.  They tried so hard to get around. In many cases their lives were ruined, but they didn’t let that stop them.  They gave their lives for us.”  While June said it was so tough to see the young men wounded, being an Army Nurse was “very fulfilling”.  For June, the fourth of July is a time for people to think about their freedom.  She says the servicemen were very thankful for all of the assistance provided to them, and she says she is thankful for the service they provided the country.  We couldn’t agree more!  Thank you June for your service and to all of our past and current military personnel!


Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Visits The Village of Redford

By / Posted on October 28th, 2011

10/26/11 Detroit, MI

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s (RWJF) board visited their grantee’s in Detroit this week. An important stop for them was The Village of Redford, a Presbyterian Villages of Michigan (PVM) campus where two Green House homes are located.

The RWJF board and staff were excited with what they saw in the homes and all the successes they heard from PVM staff and elders. For many board members and staff, this was their first time to visit an operating Green House home – although they said they have all seen the video and cried. Roger Myers, Melinda Callahan, Karl Schillinger, Angie Evans, Emma Williams, and a lovely elder named Kay,  led the PVM delegation on site and at dinner. PVM, as always, was a gracious and generous host. Their homes, now 4 years old (PVM opened the first Green House homes in Michigan and the third site in the country), have become even warmer and richer with the passage of time.

To return PVM’s favor, RWJF invited a big contingent of PVM folks to their board dinner. All had the opportunity meet RWJF’s board chair Governor Keane and Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, RWJF’s CEO and President.

As Angie and Emma were getting ready to leave, they corralled Robert for a photo. As the three were trying to figure out how get everyone into one photo, Risa walked by and offered to help out. After an excellent photo by Risa, the threesome corralled Risa (and Karl for good measure) !!STAY TUNED FOR THE PHOTO!!.

The Green House Project would like to thank Risa, RWJF, Angie, Emma, and PVM for their mission to serve those most in need as well as their unflagging support and friendship.


The Vern & Lois Boersma Cottage

By / Posted on July 21st, 2011

Holland, MI

Operating: 1
In development: 0
Square Feet per Home: 7000

Description
Designed for 10 Elders in need of 24-hour nursing care, the Vern & Lois Boersma Cottage includes a hearth room, open kitchen, farmhouse table, den, spa, and fenced patio/garden area, as well as 10 private bedrooms with private showers.

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The Vern & Lois Boersma Cottage

By / Posted on July 21st, 2011

Holland, MI

Operating: 1
In development: 0
Square Feet per Home: 7000

Description
Designed for 10 Elders in need of 24-hour nursing care, the Vern & Lois Boersma Cottage includes a hearth room, open kitchen, farmhouse table, den, spa, and fenced patio/garden area, as well as 10 private bedrooms with private showers.

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The Village of Redford

By / Posted on July 21st, 2011

Redford, MI

Operating: 2
In development: 0
Square Feet per Home: 6998

Description
The Village of Redford offers a unique concept in senior living providing cottage apartments, assisted living, Alzheimer’s/memory care services, Medicare rehabilitation sub-acute services and 24-hour skilled nursing care all on one campus. Located on a 33-acre campus on Six Mile Road between Beech Daly and Telegraph, and just steps from the new Redford Township District Library, The Village of Redford is conveniently located near shopping, banking, restaurants, a golf course, healthcare facilities, and other services.

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Porter Hills

By / Posted on July 21st, 2011

Grand Rapids, MI

Operating: 2
In Development: 0
Square Feet per Home: 0

Description
Porter Hills will be the first in the country to receive LEED certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), enhancing the lives of those living and working in The Green House homes.

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Pine Grove and Cedar Grove

By / Posted on July 21st, 2011

Powers, MI

Operating: 2
In Development: 0
Square Feet per Home: 0

Description
Pine Grove and Cedar Grove, sponsored by Pinecrest Medical Care Facility, are homes to ten elders each. Ten private rooms and private bathrooms center on the hearth and kitchen area of each home. It is a special place that looks and feels like home. The primary purpose of our Green House home is to serve as a place where elders can receive assistance and support with activities of daily living, skilled nursing care and therapy, without their healthcare becoming the focus of their existence. (more…)