Bethany Life: Helping older adults thrive

Staff Writer
Story City Herald
Bethany Life: Helping older adults thrive

For years, the long term care industry has met the physical needs of the elderly through clinical care such as medication and equipment. While the clinical piece of caring for older adults is certainly important, there are equally important wellness needs to be met.

“We are doing this to meet the needs of our residents and live out our mission of helping older adults thrive in a Christian environment of hope and compassion,” said Betsy Warburton, President and CEO of Bethany Life. “We are replacing a building that can no longer be brought up to code.

In doing so, we are creating an environment that meets the complex needs of older adults in our community.”

“This project is a chance for Bethany Life to provide future living opportunities for families seeking care for their loved ones. It’s exciting to see this facility fulfilling the needs of its residents” added Susan Amensen, board member of Bethany Life. Amensen also belongs to one of Bethany Life’s member churches.

The new construction is designed to create households. The creation of households is centered around relationship building.

Relationships allow emotional, spiritual, occupational, intellectual, and social needs to be met. The construction plans create small living spaces – each with a living space for genuine interaction and conversation and a kitchen so residents can enjoy simple pleasures like toast and coffee in the morning.

There is a front door to each space, allowing each household to control their own environment – the residents choose who is invited to dinner, what time they eat, and what the rest of the day looks like.

The construction also includes a “main street” which includes a small library, bistro, and spa/salon.

“We want to bring a sense of familiarity to the lives of our residents. Meeting friends at the local coffee shop in the morning; having a sandwich and beverage at a bistro with a family member; stopping at the local library to pick up a book; getting your hair and nails done; going to church. These are all normal activities we enjoy and take for granted and should not stop when a person becomes a resident” said Larry Elphic, Vice President of Resource Development. “The community has really come together and shown their support for this project and we are very grateful for that.”

The Bethany Life Foundation recently contributed $500,000 to the project -a combination of estate gifts and individual contributions.

“This is the future of long term care” Warburton said, “we appreciate the support of our friends, residents, families, staff, member churches, and community as a whole as we continue to care for older adults.”

Take a look at the constuction timeline for the process:

Summer 2014

Utilities and Site work

Fall 2014

Building Demo Phase 1

Build New Transitional Care/Rehabilitation Household

Remodel 1

Spring/Summer 2015

Building Demo Phase 2

Remodel 1

Build New Long Term Care Household

New 2nd Floor Household Built

Transitional Care/Rehabilitation Household Opens

Fall 2015

Main Street Construction Begins

Remodel 1

Winter 2015/2016

Residents Moved to New Rooms

Administration Remodel

Front Entry Renovated

1st Floor “C” Wing

1st Floor “B” Wing

1st Floor “A” Wing