Green House Blog

Portrait of a Green House Leader, Joyce Ebmeier

What Does it Mean to Lead Meaningful and Sustainable Change

The “Portrait of a Green House Leader” webinar series continues by highlighting the talents of Joyce Ebmeier, Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning for Tabitha Health Care Services in Lincoln, NE. Tabitha offers a continuum of services to elders, including the first Green House homes in Nebraska and the second built nationally. Joyce attributes her desire to work in elder care to her deep relationship with her grandmother and the wisdom she shared with her growing up. After graduating from the University of Nebraska with a bachelor’s degree in Education, she pursued a career in teaching before beginning her career with Tabitha in 1981, where she served as the administrator of their nursing and rehabilitation center for fourteen years. Currently, as the Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning, she is responsible for directing the overall planning, monitoring, communication, and progress of Tabitha’s business and strategic plan.

Joyce_web
Joyce (right) with her mother

Joyce was inspired to champion the development of Tabitha’s four Green House homes after listening to Dr. Thomas speak about The Green House vision in 2001. As an administrator of a traditional facility, she knew the opportunity to imagine a blank page, and create more of what she knew elder care could be through The Green House model was the next step in writing Tabitha’s future chapters. After sharing the vision, the board approved the development of one Green House home after half the initial funds were raised. Joyce identifies that engaging with a grant writer to help locate available funding sources and network with organizational leaders was a crucial strategy to raise the initial funds for the Martin house, their first Green House home to nine elders. After they demonstrated the success of the model through the Martin house, three more homes were built, with plans to purchase property and build four additional homes in the future.

From a cost perspective, Joyce states that their Green House homes are major contributors to the success of the

Construction of a Green House home on Tabitha's campus
Construction of the Good House

entire company. Specifically, adding Green House homes for long term care into Tabitha’s continuum of services provided an opportunity to expand their capacity for post acute short term rehabilitation in their legacy building. This balance of costs and revenues combined aids in the growth of Tabitha’s entire organization. Further, Joyce describes that the quality of care associated with their Green House homes has become a hallmark within the community that is a “magnet” for people seeking long term care. This high demand results in a reliable, sustainable census that is crucial for overall operational success.

However, Joyce notes that the true success or “magic” of The Green House model comes from the incredible people who live and work in the homes and the culture created to foster deep knowing relationships. “It’s the most important part of getting The Green House model correct. If you don’t have the right people and you don’t provide an environment which empowers them to do their work with the elders… if that doesn’t happen the most beautiful and perfectly designed houses are really a waste of time and money.” At Tabitha, recruiting extremely creative, great people has resulted in

Annual Green House carnival
Annual Green House carnival

unique teams in each home where people feel empowered to bring who they are into their work. This results in extraordinary events and celebrations, such as their annual Green House carnival, and quiet everyday moments of compassion, love, and joy in the homes that couldn’t occur in a traditional setting. For Joyce, when talking about her accomplishments in her career, she identifies working with The Green House Project as the one she’s most proud of, yet is continuously striving for success in providing the highest quality of care for elders. When thinking about her Green House legacy in the future, she hopes it reads “But as remarkable as the Green House model became, what came next from these pioneers in elder care was even better.”

Listen to this recorded webinar interview>>

The White House Conference On Aging Releases a Final Report

“In a year that marked the 50th anniversary of Medicare, Medicaid, and the Older Americans Act, as well as the 80th anniversary of Social Security, the White House Conference on Aging provided an opportunity to reflect on the importance of these programs, highlight new actions to support Americans as we age, and focus on the powerful role that technology can play in lives of seniors in the decade ahead.”  –Cecilia Munoz, director of the White House Domestic Policy Council

WHCOA_picThe Green House Project was honored to participate and be highlighted during the 2015 White House Conference on Aging.  “Through a combination of listening sessions, breakout groups, watch parties, regional and topical forums, and written feedback, the White House heard from thousands of Americans about the issues most important to them regarding our aging population.”  Click here to read the final report for the 2015 White House Conference on Aging that summarizes the work of the White House to create a fulfilling and dignified world for elders and those who work closest to them.

One highlight was a visit by Executive Director of The White House Conference on Aging, Nora Super, to Leonard Florence Center for living, the first urban Green House model, located outside of Boston.  There, Ms. Super engaged in dialogue with elders and staff members to learn how The Green House model creates caring homes and meaningful lives for those who live and work there.  This opportunity gave the model a national stage to share the impact that it can have for elders and staff in long term care.

White House Conference on Aging Executive Director, Nora Super, pictured with Green House and Leonard Florence team members
White House Conference on Aging Executive Director, Nora Super, pictured with Green House and Leonard Florence team members

 

Lebanon Valley Brethren Home Releases New Video Highlighting Their Green House homes

At Lebanon Valley Brethren Home we believe in empowering our elders and providing innovative ways to care for their needs both in mind, body and spirit. This video is the story about our Green House homes, which are designed to serve those who need the highest level of nursing care.

LVBH
Lebanon Valley Green House home

We decided to tell our story by video for a few different reasons.  First and foremost, we wanted to create a clear and visual way to describe The Green House model to prospective elders and their families.  Because we limit outside visits to preserve the value of ‘real home’,video is another way to create that “seeing is believing” experience.

Additionally, this video is a great way to educate our team, community and stakeholders about The Green House model.   By ensuring that our network understands the value of this model and the life that we are creating at Lebanon Valley Brethren Home, we are looking forward to their support in building more Green House homes in the future.

Thank you for taking the time to watch our video, and if you would like to learn more about our community, please visit our website.

Jeff Shireman is the President and CEO of Lebanon Valley Brethren Home