Residents of Las Ventanas in Las Vegas were so troubled when couples had to be separated if one needed special care due to dementia that they took it upon themselves to help solve the problem. Thanks to the generous support of residents, ABHCM member Las Ventanas is now one of 11 continuing care retirement communities operated by American Baptist Homes of the West (ABHOW) to provide a critical extra level of care through its pioneering memory support model, The Grove.
Sixteen apartments in what will be called the Ronald Reagan Memory Support Suites are set to open to residents at Las Ventanas in early 2016.
“We could see people who will need this care in the near future,” says resident Carolyn Leontos, who led the fundraising campaign. “We already have people in assisted living and independent living who are prime candidates.”
Residents of the community have always enjoyed peace of mind – knowing that they have a home as their need for assistance increases. Practically any additional level of care or help they might need is available right in their community, including assisted living or skilled nursing.
Now residents and their families have even more peace of mind with the knowledge that those who need specialized care and security because of Alzheimer’s or other dementias can get it where they already live.
Residents themselves donated nearly all of the $1.5 million the retirement community’s local Foundation committee set as a fundraising goal, says Leontos, current co-chair of the committee. They raised the money in just 10 months, seven months ahead of schedule.
Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States, and one in three seniors die from Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Las Vegas, like other cities and communities across the nation, faces a growing need and challenge to better serve this population.
For more information about The Grove at Las Ventanas, contact Jonathan Boyar, executive director, at 702-360-2662, ext. 225.
Click here to view videos, stories and resources about The Grove, ABHOW's memory support program.
“While we already offer a comprehensive array of services, we felt there was still an unmet need, specifically for those challenged with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia,” says Jonathan Boyar, executive director of Las Ventanas. “Memory care is crucial because it expands beyond standard services offered in assisted living.”
The Grove’s supportive approach is based on a social model rather than a medical model. The building design creates a home-like feel and provides visual cues to residents. The schedule and activities are built around each resident’s interests and habits, and the focus is on abilities rather than disabilities.
|Residents at Las Ventanas raised nearly $1.5 million to build The Grove.|
The Grove provides increased opportunities for socialization because relationships are nurtured between residents as well as between residents and staff, explained Paul Jepson, who managed the first Grove in Redlands, California, before his death several years ago. Under the program’s philosophy, all care at The Grove is rooted in the belief that every human being is “valuable, precious and unique” – and therefore deserving of dignified care.
“Our research-based philosophy of care encourages our residents’ unique abilities with respect to their personal preferences,” Boyar says.
Under the care model, team members at other ABHOW communities have found positive results: improved physical health, decreased wandering, less agitation, better sleep patterns, stronger interpersonal relationships and less use of medications to control moods and behaviors.
“As this debilitating disease touches more individuals, the quality of care must follow suit,” Boyar says. “Memory care is a step in the right direction.”