Green House Blog

“Homes on The Range”, Inspiring Documentary of Green House homes in Sheridan, WY

Homes on the Range, a documentary from producer and director, Dale Bell, captures the amazing 10-year journey, of the citizens of Sheridan, Wyoming, who built the first grassroots Green House homes in the country.  This film chronicles their struggles, successes and ultimately the triumphant opening of their Green House homes, which change the way elders live in their community.

There are many ways to view this documentary. The film will be shown on PBS stations around the country, and DVDs are available for purchase.  Broadcasts will begin in May, which is Older American’s month.  All information about Homes on The Range can be found at: http://mediapolicycenter.org/

 

To see a full list of current airdates and times>>

Homes on the Range “The New Pioneers” TEASE from Media Policy Center on Vimeo.

The New York Times Features the Green House Model

Word traveled quickly last week after The New York Times published an article by Jane Brody entitled, “The Green House Effect: Homes for the Elderly to Thrive.” It took only several days after the piece was published to our Facebook page for over 16,000 people to see the article, many of whom liked or shared Brody’s insights with their own social networks.

The author creates a clear and powerful image of the Green House model and its core values with support from interviews with Dr. Bill Thomas and Steve McAlilly, CEO of Mississippi Methodist Senior Services in Tupelo, MS. By showing readers that Green House homes provide Elders with a nurturing and respectful environment where they can continue to thrive, Brody exposes the “medicalization of old age” that many of the 1.5 million Americans living and working in nursing homes experience each day.

Today, nearly 2,000 Elders across the nation are living in Green House homes in partnership with caring Shahbazim, clinical support teams and families. The swell of national recognition that we have received over the past year is a clear indication that the Green House model is well positioned to experience rapid growth and adoption in the new year as Americans embrace the power of meaningful life, real home and empowered staff as they age.

Green House Living for Sheridan Opening Celebration

Remarks of Robert Jenkens, Director, The Green House Project at The Green House Living for Sheridan opening celebration on 2/27:

It is a real pleasure to be here today to offer congratulations to The Green House Living for Sheridan team and board, from The Green House Project, NCB Capital Impact, and The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The Sheridan Green House project is the 29th to open in the United States. This is a significant accomplishment for any organization and it puts Sheridan’s efforts squarely in the pioneering group of Green House adopters.

It takes skill, hard work, and courage to be among the first of a radically new approach. But it takes audacity and vision to take on a transformative innovation as a start-up community led organization. The Green House team has talked to many citizen groups interested in bringing the Green House model of skilled nursing home care to their community. All of these groups have the passion for change, but very few are able to bring this model to fruition.

When I first met Doug, Carmen, and Keith at the Green House workshop in Tupelo, MS in 2006, I knew they represented a group who could succeed. The first sign I had was that they walked right up to the front of the room and took up positions directly across from the podium. Nobody has done this before or after.

The second sign was the questions they asked. Despite being surrounded by experienced nursing home CEOs, CFO’s, and DONs, they were not intimidated. Their questions were intense and smart.

The third sign was the emotion in their eyes. Their commitment to bringing a new long-term care choice to the people they cared passionately about, their friends and neighbors in Sheridan, was clear. It was obvious to me that very little was going to stand in their way. I assume that audacity is a Wyoming trait?

And so it is with the deepest gratitude that I thank The Green House Living for Sheridan Board, Team, and community for a culture of audacity that has made you such good partners to The Green House team, NCB capital Impact, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Congratulations again for the skill, perseverance, and sacrifice that were necessary to convert your passion into the first community-led skilled nursing Green House homes to open in the country.

Green House Living in Wyoming Prepares To Welcome Elders

Green House Living for Sheridan

The nation’s first grassroots-organized Green House Project homes will open their doors to welcome elders on January 31st in Sheridan, Wyoming.

Nearly five years in the making, Green House Living in Sheridan has completed construction on two of four planned Green House cottages at the newly created Village at Cloud Peak Ranch. Two more cottages will be completed by mid-February, serving a total of 48 elders, and a grand opening celebration is scheduled for March.

Green House Living in Sheridan President Doug Osborn shared the news Dec. 30 and said the community-based initiative would not have been possible without support from volunteers and contributors from every level of local government and walk of life.

“The Scott Cottage, the Watt Cottage, the Whitney Cottage, the Founders Cottage… will introduce this change in nursing home care to the state of Wyoming and help other communities as they consider providing the kind of care and fulfilling lives our elders deserve,” Osborn said.

Green House Living in Sheridan will provide 24/7 skilled nursing care but it is not a nursing home or assisted living facility. Elders have their own private room with bathroom and shower, and each cottage has a spa room near the kitchen. Up to 12 elders share a cottage and a central living and dining area. Each cottage has a household team of Shahbazim who care for, cook for and eat with the elders.

“We have a table where everyone sits together and experiences what we call convivium, which is the experience of eating together, just like in a real home,” said Green House Living administrator Chris Szymanski in an interview with Sheridan Media posted online here.

What really sets the model apart is the philosophy and organizational structure. The Shahbazim and all medical and support staff are trained in a circular organizational structure centered around the elders, creating an environment for them to grow and thrive, like in a “green house.”

The model is designed to transform the experience for both the elders and the staff. Sheridan just completed the first round of training Shahbazim for the Scott and Watt cottages and will begin training the second round later this month.

“Especially gratifying is watching our new employees in training, wrapping their minds and souls around the concepts and methods which define the Green House model,” Osborn said.

Visit SheridanGreenHouse.org for more information, photos and updates on Wyoming’s first Green House Project.