By Mary Hopfner-Thomas / Posted on August 7th, 2017
In the spirit of honoring the past, officials from the West Vue Nursing Home broke ground for their new Green House homes the same way it happened over half a century ago–with mules and a plow!
August 3, 2017 was a bright and sunny day to officially launch the construction of three 10-bedroom Green House homes. In fact construction equipment was ready to begin their work once the event had concluded!
Located in West Plains, Missouri, the West Vue Nursing Home has been dedicated to providing care to elders in their rural community since the mid 1960’s and has earned a stellar reputation in the area.
In addition to Green House staff on hand for the event, GHN Architects and Engineers President Brad Baker expressed his eagerness to be part of the the project and his deep support for the Green House model, and his hope that more will be built.
The decision to build the homes was made with careful thought and consideration by the board of directors and leadership at West Vue. President and CEO, Jalynn Meidell said that when she heard about the model, she knew she wanted West Vue to be part of it.
The homes are slated to open later next year. Congratulations to all involved in the development of this project!
By Rachel Scher McLean / Posted on July 13th, 2015
For Immediate Release: Friday, July 10, 2015
Contact: Rachel McLean, firstname.lastname@example.org, 703-850-1897
Kavan Peterson, email@example.com, 206-305-2798
THE GREEN HOUSE PROJECT REPRESENTED AT THE WHITE HOUSE CONFERENCE ON AGING
Innovative Model for Elder Care Receives Attention from National Leadership
Arlington, VA: The Green House Project’s landmark approach to skilled nursing care will be highlighted at the White House Conference on Aging. The objective of the conference, which happens only once every 10 years, is to identify and advance actions to improve the quality of life of older Americans, and to look ahead to the issues that will help shape the landscape for older Americans for the next decade.
Since 2003, Green House homes have gone beyond simply providing quality medical care to elders: they’ve offered an environment and support system that enables each person to retain their individuality, and to live in a real home.
Nora Super, executive director at the White House Conference on Aging, recently visited the Leonard Florence Center for Living in Massachusetts and video footage from this visit will be shown during the event. This conference will draw greater attention to the model that is changing the face of elder care throughout the country.
“We live in an exciting era of growth and change in which outdated models of long term care are, at long last, being disrupted and replaced,” said Bill Thomas, geriatrician and founder of The Green House Project, who will attend the conference. “I am delighted that the White House Conference on Aging will be bringing well deserved attention to how we’re helping America reimagine care and caregiving in the 21st Century.”
Green House homes, which serve only 10-12 elders at a time, have private rooms and baths and a common, open kitchen. Supportive and versatile caregivers deliver outstanding care and engage in deep knowing relationships with elders. By comprehensively transforming the architecture, organizational design and philosophy of care, the model provides elders with high quality health care and a high quality of life that far exceeds the experience in traditional nursing homes.
In 2003, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation helped pioneer the first Green House home in Tupelo, Mississippi. Today, more than 180 Green House homes are in existence in 28 states across the country, and more than 150 are in development.
Not only are Green House homes rising in popularity, they have been shown to reduce costs of care and treatment and offer a solution to delivering higher quality care at a competitive cost in the U.S.
“The Green House model is based in the belief that all people deserve to live their whole life to its fullest,” said Susan Frazier, senior director of The Green House Project. “With a decade of proven success, we are at a tipping point for the growth of this model and see the power that real home has on the health and wellbeing of elders and those who love them.”
The Green House Project
A partnership between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Capital Impact Partners and the Center for Growing and Becoming, The Green House Project provides consulting, organizational development services, and ongoing support to providers and local organizations to support the development and operation of Green House homes across the country. To date, more than 180 Green Home homes are in operation.
By Mary Hopfner-Thomas / Posted on February 9th, 2015
If you’ve ever had the chance to tour or attend a Green House workshop at the Leonard Florence Center for Living (LFCL)—you undoubtedly walked away with a special appreciation for the meaningful life taking place in those ten homes.
You may also have had the opportunity to meet Steve Saling, one person living in those homes and is often a tour guide for groups. In fact, the home he lives in carries his name, the Steve Saling ALS Residence, because he was such an inspirational part of how the technology in that home provides such independence for those living with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or ALS.
Steve is a big supporter of The ALS Residence Initiative (ALSRI) founded to inspire replication of homes like the one at LFCL across America and the world. Their mission is clearly explained on their home page:
“This is too special a place to be unique in the world. We will help you open an ALS Residence near you. Explore this site to learn more.”
The website offers a variety of information including the fact that there is no known cause and no medical treatment or cure for ALS:
It is a neurodegenerative condition thought to be caused by a breakdown of cellular recycling systems in the neurons of the spinal cord and brain that results in the nervous system slowly losing its ability to carry brain signals to the body’s muscular system. ALS is not inherently fatal but death is usually a complication of the diaphragm becoming too weak for the lungs to function.
The story behind Steve and his involvement in the construction and development of the ALS home is truly amazing. It is captured in the video on the home page of their website.
We invite you to take a moment and visit the website—we encourage you to share it with your networks.
Who knows…YOU may be the spark that ignites the development of a home that provides a rich and more meaningful life to those who didn’t feel that was possible!
By Admin / Posted on November 26th, 2014
Twylah and David Haun are residents of John Knox Village, in Pompano Beach, Fl, and were a part of a group from Independent Living who researched The Green House model and presented it to Administration.
— TheGreenHouseProject (@GreenHouse_Proj) November 18, 2014
The administration at John Knox Village, decided that their excellent nursing home was getting old, and needed to be updated. The residents of John Knox insisted that whatever was built had to have a private room with private bath for each person. When David first heard about The Green House model, he was skeptical. He thought it just seemed too good to be true. He feared our local staff wouldn’t accept the concept, and he questioned the quality and efficiency of preparing meals in each home. Finally he wondered how wise it was to pay outside Green House “experts” who might dictate plans and organization for John Knox.
In 2011, David suggested a visit some existing Green House homes to learn more. He felt it wasn’t fair to condemn the concept in ignorance. The possibility of what could be discovered was exciting.
On the first visit to Buckner Westminster Place, in Longview, TX, Twylah remembers thinking, “Wow, this doesn’t look like a nursing home at all!” As their exploration continued, they entered the GH Cottages of Wentworth Place, in Magnolia, Arkansas, and became more and more excited, Tywlah proclaimed “why would we want to recreate the wheel, this is a proven model”.
Both David and Twylah were impressed with the number of Shahbazim (versatile worker that serves as direct care staff) and Guides saying how thrilled they were with the quality of care The Green House model enabled them to give their elders. “I never would want to work in a traditional style again” seemed to be a recurring theme.
By the fourth Green House visit in The Green House Homes at Traceway in Tupelo, MS, David found that all of his questions and reservations regarding the cost, the food, and the organization were answered. He was convinced. He decided that working with The Green House Project was a sure thing. Just as The Ritz Carlton is a proven model for creating an excellent hotel, John Knox should depend on The Green House model to guide building design, as well as, education and organizational redesign. The Green House homes at John Knox Village will look different than the various homes around the country, because they will reflect the culture of John Knox Village, but they will have the proven elements and core values of Real Home, Meaningful Life and Empowered Staff that has led to successful outcomes across the country.
John Knox leadership decided to follow The Green House model, and plans were drawn for a seven story Health Center with 12 homes, with 12 residents each.
Twylah and David have been privileged to share the story of how the residents of John Knox Village were the driving force to bring this change to the organization. Honoring varied faith traditions, Twylah shares a request to lift the Green House staff members (and especially the Shahbazim) in prayer to honor those who have chosen to spend their lives caring for elders in this special way; those who have a desire to create a real home that truly meets the unique needs of its elders.
John Knox Village is pleased to become part of The Green House family. Twylah and David have made many new friends in this journey, and wish all Green House Homes a Happy Holiday and look forward to serving in the New Year.
By Mary Hopfner-Thomas / Posted on October 15th, 2014
Darlene Hanley, CEO for the St. Lawrence Rehabilitation Center and Morris Hall (Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing) welcomed local officials and members of the press to review the development plans for the organization.
Susan Frazier, The Green House Project COO, was a featured speaker at the event. Work is already underway at the site, which will be called Morris Hall Meadows. The first homes are expected to open late spring 2015.
Welcome to the Green House family and congratulations to all!
By Kris Angevine / Posted on October 11th, 2014
Saying goodbye is never easy. Saying goodbye to a particularly adventurous soul – one who embodied so much of our vision to lead and inspire a shift in society’s views of elderhood –- is especially difficult. Louis “Lou” DeLucia was a friend, a wise elder, an independent spirit, an advocate, and a shining example of what is unique and beautiful about the Green House model of skilled nursing care.
Lou challenged staff and fellow residents to “think outside the box.” Earlier this year, he came to the table at one of St. John’s community-based Green House homes in Penfield, NY and said, “We should get a dog.” Lou had the insight to see how this pet could enhance their quality of life. Alexandra, or Lexi, as she’s called, moved in on June 24, and has become a cherished companion. Says elder Dorothy Carcelli, first-time dog owner at age 89, “She (Lexi) brings a lot of joy to everybody.”
Lou insisted on going outside every day, even throughout the winter. We worried for him, but he wouldn’t have it any other way. He made friends throughout the adjacent Arbor Ridge community and when they hosted their holiday party, Lou was the elder they invited. After his passing on August 12, they came together to give a gift in his honor. They wrote, “Lou was a good neighbor and friend, and quite a character as well! We in Arbor Ridge will miss his presence and remember him fondly.” This gesture is evidence of the community connections and relationships Lou formed because he had the opportunity to be a part of something beyond the traditional nursing home and took advantage of it each and every day.
Lou reminds us to keep celebrating and keep seeking these non-traditional approaches to meaningful days for our elders.
He has left a valuable legacy.
By Mary Hopfner-Thomas / Posted on April 7th, 2014
None of us would argue that staff turnover creates a host of problems for organizations. Staff retention is vital from a quality perspective, but what about the economic impact it plays for a health care provider?
The issue is explored by the Director of THE GREEN HOUSE® Project, David Farrell and PHI Strategic Advisor, Steven Dawson, in the Spring/Summer 2014 publication of the Indiana Health Care Association “Insight”.
High turnover of your direct care workers can mean reduced quality of care, increased stress for the staff, inefficiencies across many levels, the constant need to recruit and train—which lead to some very high dollar issues.
While some nursing home providers say it is “inevitable”, when they sit down and truly calculate those costs they are shocked so see their annual turnover costs! In the article Farrell and Dawson discuss investing in proven retention strategies.
Click here to read the full article and let us know how turnover has affected your organization!
Are you curious about staff turnover in a Green House home?
The Green House model gives Elders four times more contact and reduces staff turnover. A Green House home is created from the ground up to foster the same feeling and experience you get from living in a real home. Each home is designed for 10-12 Elders keeping it flexible and maintaining a warm feel. The comfort of private rooms and bathrooms are combined with the family-like atmosphere of open common spaces.
The innovative organizational structure in the Green House model is based upon “the conviction that we need a new framework around which to organize the experience of those who protect, sustain, and nurture our Elders.” The structure challenges the traditional nursing home hierarchy to create environments that empower elders and those who are closest to them.
By Tara Cugelman-McMahon / Posted on March 11th, 2014
Dr. Bill Thomas’ Second Wind Tour kicks off in three weeks. As a sponsor, THE GREEN HOUSE® Project is busy getting ready to revolutionize the national conversation around nursing homes, by bringing attention to our person-centered model with an emphasis on each person living a meaningful life. We are taking this message on the road and hitting 25 cities along the way!
Inspired by Thomas’ new book examining the baby boom generation’s reluctant generational second coming of age—“Second Wind: Navigating the Passage to a Slower, Deeper and More Connected Life” (published by Simon and Schuster March 11 and named by Publisher’s Weekly as a Top 10 Social Science book of 2014)—the Second Wind Tour will visit 25 cities on a national bus tour from March 31-June 6, 2014.
Each half-day performance will be held in a premier theater with two acts. Act one will consist of five fast-paced theatrical monologues featuring a cast of speakers including Dr. Thomas, Susan Frazier or David Farrell of THE GREEN HOUSE® Project, and renowned consumer health expert and TV personality Dr. Janet Taylor. The second act blends the illumination of the deep connections between music, identity, and memory in the form a “marvelous surprise” documentary film preview by director Michael Rossato-Bennett followed by a live musical performance by Musicians for World Harmony founder Samite Mulondo.
If you are interested in attending one of these performances, please visit the Second Wind Tour Website, http://secondwindtour.org/. If you are not near a tour stop or unable to attend, we still want you to be involved! Join the social media conversation by following The Green House Project, @GreenHouse_Proj, and the Second Wind Tour by using the hashtag #secondwindtour.
We are so grateful for the opportunity to spread the Green House vision across America!
Highlighting THE GREEN HOUSE® Project Team: Scott Brown, Director of Marketing and Business Development
By Tara Cugelman-McMahon / Posted on March 6th, 2014
Scott remembers visiting his grandmother in a traditional nursing home. He remembers the institutional environment, and how uncomfortable it was for him. He wondered how this could be the best place for his grandmother.
This experience played an important role in bringing Scott to THE GREEN HOUSE® Project.
“Green House homes are wonderful places for elders. In addition to being a place where elders can thrive, this model addresses the changes in healthcare that emphasize quality care and outcomes. And consumers are clamoring for a new and better model for elder care. The Green House model can be the solution for elder care providers trying to adapt to these trends. It can help them deliver high quality care in an environment that is nurturing, supportive and caring.”
Scott joins THE GREEN HOUSE® Project as Director of Marketing and Business Development. He was previously an executive at Lincoln Healthcare Group, an organization that’s mission is to improve healthcare in the United States by advancing excellence in leadership, strategy and innovation. As Senior Vice President, he was responsible for Lincoln’s Post-Acute segment, which included long term care, senior living and home care. In addition to his focus on the development of thought leadership and innovative education for senior executives, he was responsible for financial results, sales management and marketing strategy, and customer delivery and operations. During his time with Lincoln, Scott combined a fervent dedication to clients with a commitment to healthcare transformation.
Scott held a number of high level executive and marketing positions, including: Vice President of Marketing for Insurity, an enterprise software company; Vice President, Database Marketing & Global Lead Management for Gartner; and General Manager & Executive Vice President for BroadReach Partners, a professional services firm providing outsourced new business development and consulting services.
Scott is a Cum Laude graduate of Connecticut College, and has an MBA from the University of Connecticut with a concentration in Marketing.
A Pre-Conference Intensive for Shahbazim at The 6th Annual Green House Meeting and Celebration: A Day to Explore the Coordinator Roles and Relational Coordination in Green House Homes
By Anna Ortigara / Posted on September 11th, 2013
On the day a Green House home opens the Shahbazim become the managers of the home as well as partners to the Elders. It requires a deep understanding of the systems that support the home. The core functions include the Food, Scheduling, Care, Team, and Housekeeping systems and the Coordinator Roles each Shahbaz fills on a rotating basis. These functions are the guts of the home and to be successfully carried out require strong relationships and excellent communication. If the systems work, the days go smoothly. Without good systems, respectful relationships and high communication it can be a rocky road!
This preconference day will explore the Coordinator Roles and the core systems around Food, Scheduling and Care. It will ask participants to identify what makes for good relational coordination; meaning shared vision, shared knowledge and mutual respect. The best thinking and lessons learned will be the basis for conversations on how to sharpen and improve the core systems and relationships of the homes.
If you are a Shahbaz at an open or soon to be open Green House home, plan on attending THE GREEN HOUSE® Annual Meeting and Celebration in Boston on November 18th. Leave with new ideas, new insights and many new friends. Register at the Peer Network website. For more information about the program contact Aortigara@ncbcapitalimpact.org
Please note: The Green House Annual Meeting & Celebration is an event exclusively available to Green House adopters for sharing, learning, and celebrating the growth of The Green House model. The Annual Meeting honors organizations for their commitment to create real home, empowered staff, and meaningful lives for elders. Sessions provide peers with an opportunity to reflect on lessons learned, revisit skills for coaching leaders, and build relationships to support sustainable change
By Admin / Posted on July 12th, 2013
New collaborations build on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s $10 million
program-related investment in THE GREEN HOUSE® Project
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2013
Princeton, NJ — The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s (RWJF) efforts to bring high-quality skilled nursing care to low-income seniors got a boost recently as both AARP Foundation and The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation announced new investments in The Green House Project. The new commitments bolster the national loan fund for Green House homes that RWJF helped to establish in 2011 with a 10-year, $10 million low-interest credit facility.
AARP Foundation unveiled a new $2.5 million program-related investment (PRI) in innovative housing options for the vulnerable, 50+ population, including The Green House Project. The Weinberg Foundation simultaneously agreed to formalize and grow its existing grant program for skilled nursing facilities that both adopt The Green House model and serve low-income populations. The Weinberg Foundation has committed to a minimum of $8 million in capital grants for Green House residences this fiscal year alone.
Though the three foundations’ investments differ in their details, they share the common goal of bringing a higher and more personalized standard of care to aging Americans in every community. The three also share a joint belief that innovative financing is a vital tool for giving lower-income communities the capital required to develop truly excellent, affordable long-term care options.
Unlike traditional nursing homes that have a more institutional feel, Green House homes are designed from the ground up to look and feel like a real home. In an effort to provide more personalized and dignified care, only six to 12 elders live in each home, and every resident has the comfort of a private room and bathroom, along with the freedom to set his or her own daily routine. Even the care in a Green House home is different, with a small team of trained universal caregivers meeting the majority of needs of the residents. Research shows that a Green House home’s intimate layout, combined with its innovative staffing model, provides residents with four times more personal and social contact than typical nursing homes.
“The Green House Project delivers on a bold vision of better, more dignified care for elders that is spreading widely in communities across the country,” said Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, MD, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “We are thrilled to have the AARP and Weinberg Foundations join us in investing to spread the impact of this powerful model to all seniors, regardless of income.”
AARP Foundation: Leveraging Investment Instruments to Drive 50+ Housing Innovation
With the use of program-related investments, AARP Foundation aims to create new models of housing that are scalable and replicable, and to increase the sheer number of affordable and adequate housing units available for low-income Americans over 50. With at least 13 million Americans in low-income, 50+ households struggling to find affordable and/or adequate housing, AARP Foundation identified housing as an area ripe for impact investing.
In addition to funding the replication of The Green House model, led by NCB Capital Impact, the $2.5 million investment will also support Enterprise Community Loan Fund, Inc. and ROC USA. The former will use the investment to help finance the creation of affordable rental and rural housing for low-income seniors. The latter will use it to empower owners of mobile homes, a vulnerable and aging group, to cooperatively purchase the land on which their homes are located.
“All of these projects aim to build, retrofit, or purchase safe and affordable housing that not only helps older residents avoid high housing cost burdens, but also addresses their need for community—either by helping them age in place or create a new community based on a non-institutional model,” said AARP Foundation President Jo Ann Jenkins.
Weinberg Foundation: Expanding on an Early Investment in Culture Change
During the last five years, the Weinberg Foundation has made six capital grants for Green House homes, totaling just over $5.5 million, including some of the most innovative adoptions of the model. During that time, the Weinberg Foundation has seen demand for small home nursing models like Green House soar. At the same time, millions of vulnerable older adults have been unable to access the quality, skilled care they need—whether due to limited incomes, high costs of care, or isolation.
To fulfill its vision that every older adult has the opportunity to lead a life of dignity and independence, no matter their ability or income, the Weinberg Foundation has agreed to formalize and expand its Green House development grants program, committing to a minimum of $8 million in capital grants for these residences in the 2014 fiscal year. Among other requirements, applying providers must serve at least 60 percent Medicaid-eligible individuals, with 70 percent preferred, and be open to people of all beliefs.
“All older adults deserve the chance to lead meaningful, engaged lives and to maintain their independence for as long as possible,” said Donn Weinberg, Weinberg Foundation trustee and executive vice president. “Through the combined total of more than $13 million in capital grants already made or planned, the Weinberg Foundation hopes to extend the Green House and other culture-change models to more of our most vulnerable older adults so that they can continue to live robust, healthy lives.”
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: Increasing the Impact of a Long-Time Investment
Since 2002, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded $20 million, primarily to NCB Capital Impact, to develop, test, and evaluate The Green House model. In 2011, the Foundation made a new $10 million program investment to build on its existing support of Green House, with the goal of helping the model achieve greater reach and impact than its current presence (146 homes across 24 states).
Specifically, the PRI lowers the cost of financing Green House projects that serve low-income individuals and low-income areas. NCB Capital Impact serves as administrator for the loan fund and seeks investors to leverage RWJF funding in any one project by a ratio of 4-to-1. The investment was part of RWJF’s larger $100 million “impact capital” commitment designed to help the Foundation and its grantees leverage funding from multiple sources and spread innovative solutions that improve health and health care for all Americans.
About the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation’s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to health and health care, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, measurable, and timely change. For 40 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. When it comes to helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need, the Foundation expects to make a difference in your lifetime. For more information, visit www.rwjf.org. Follow the Foundation on Twitter www.rwjf.org/twitter or Facebook www.rwjf.org/facebook.
About The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation
The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, one of the largest private charitable foundations in the United States, provides approximately $100 million in annual grants to nonprofits that provide direct services to low-income and vulnerable individuals and families, primarily in the U.S. and Israel. Grants are focused on meeting basic needs and enhancing an individual’s ability to meet those needs, with emphasis on older adults, the Jewish community, and our hometown communities including Maryland, northeastern Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Israel, and the Former Soviet Union. For more information, please go to www.hjweinbergfoundation.org.
About AARP Foundation
AARP Foundation is working to win back opportunity for struggling Americans 50+ by being a force for change on the most serious issues they face today: housing, hunger, income and isolation. By coordinating responses to these issues on all four fronts at once, and supporting them with vigorous legal advocacy, the Foundation serves the unique needs of those 50+ while working with local organizations nationwide to reach more people, strengthen communities, work more efficiently and make resources go further. AARP Foundation is AARP’s affiliated charity. Learn more at www.aarpfoundation.org.
About NCB Capital Impact
NCB Capital Impact helps people and communities reach their highest potential at every stage of life. As a Congressionally chartered, District of Columbia, non-profit community development finance institution, Capital Impact 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. Capital Impact has used its depth of experience, cooperative approach, and diverse network of alliances to generate over $1.825 billion in critical investments that create a high quality of life for low income people and communities. www.ncbcapitalimpact.org
About The Green House Project
The Green House Project is a radically new, national model for skilled-nursing care that returns control, dignity and a sense of well-being to elders, their families and direct care staff. In the Green House model, residents receive care in small, self-contained homes organized to deliver individualized care, meaningful relationships and better direct care jobs through a self-managed team of direct care staff working in cross-trained roles. Green House homes meet all state and federal regulatory and reimbursement criteria for skilled nursing facilities. http://thegreenhouseproject.org/
By Margaret Stansbury / Posted on April 9th, 2013
Congratulations to Christian Care Communities for breaking ground on The Homeplace at Midway, the first Green House homes in the State of Kentucky! Today, supporters of The Homeplace at Midway gathered to celebrate this very special moment for Elders in Kentucky.
In the words of Christian Care Communities, “With shovels in hand and wearing hard hats, public officials, community and business leaders joined with Christian Care for the groundbreaking, signaling the start of the new $13.5 million Green House® community at 671 East Stephens Street, across from Midway College.”
To learn more about Christian Care Communities’ and these new Green House homes please click here.