First Green House Homes in Minnesota Officially Open!

By / Posted on July 8th, 2014

Despite the long winter and flooding in Minnesota this year…the ribbon cutting ceremony at Water’s Edge on June 26th was a real success.  The first Green House homes located in Mankato, Minnesota will be welcoming Elders in mid-July.  Congratulations to all!

The three story project, with an assisted living Green House home on each floor, was developed and will be operated by Grace Senior Services.  Owners, Brad and Heather Bass along with their children and other city officials were all on hand for the grand opening event.

Water’s Edge is located on the Mankato hilltop and will offer wonderful scenic waterfront and woodland views.  Of course every Green House home also offers private bedroom and bathrooms for Elders, a central hearth area, full kitchen with home cooked meals, and a dining room area.  It can be chilly during those Minnesota winters, so Water’s Edge will also include heated bathroom floors and a “four-season sun porch” for each home.

The Director of Operations for Water’s Edge will be Brooke Olson.  The initial team to staff the first home is currently receiving their 128 hours of additional training to their current certification as a nurse, licensed practical nurse or nursing assistant.

The supplemental training is a hallmark of The Green House model of care.  The people who live and work in a Green House home collaborate to create a flexible daily routine that meets and Elder’s needs and preferences.  If they wish, Elders can help cook, and assist with housekeeping or laundry.  There is no predetermined routine, which facilitates independence and an Elder’s ability to pursue individual interests and schedules.  Deep relationships between the Elders and staff are one reason that the Green House model creates dramatic improvements in quality of life and care.

Capital Impact Partners was critical in the development and funding of Water’s Edge.  They provided $1.5 million in financing for the project:  One million from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s program-related investment (PRI) and $500,000 from the AARP Foundation PRI funds.  Capital Impact Partners, a congressionally chartered, non-profit community development finance institution provides financial services and technical assistance nationwide to help make high-quality health care, healthy foods, housing and education more accessible and attainable, and eldercare more dignified and respectful.  Water’s Edge owner Brad Bass was most pleased to work with Capital Impact Partners, “You have a great program and excellent staff.  I could never have done this without all of your extensive resources!  Not to mention the funding that was really the igniter to get this development going”.

We wish the team at Water’s Edge only the best as they welcome their Elders into the Green House homes during the upcoming weeks!  Again, congratulations to all!