In Denver Colorado there is something happening that could change the way elders are cared for in the United States.
The Colorado non-profit Holistic Community Living exists to operate and teach others to operate neighborhood-based assisted living homes. Founder David Lazaroff says, “we are creating the opportunity for people to complete their lives in a way that is consistent with how they live their most productive years. We are demonstrating how elders can continue to be a vibrant part of their community, connected to their friends, relatives, and social organizations, even when they outlive the strength of their mind or body.”
Holistic Community Living will operate non-profit homes and teach others to operate for-profit homes. Things you won’t find everywhere else are a high level of integration with the neighborhood, a staff that is paid higher and works fewer hours than in most assisted living facilities, a 12 resident population, wholesome foods, and a truly holistic approach to care. Lazaroff explains, “what makes the real difference is having a staff that knows their most important job is to be present with whatever is most important to each resident. That means being responsive and entering the residents’ world and helping them move through the whatever life is presenting, whether that is physical comfort, emotional memories, or imaginations. Empathy, compassion, and the recognition of the human beauty and dignity of every person is the cornerstone of care. Life is about what is available to participate in and enjoy.” Lazaroff has a commitment that each resident can complete their life in the home, even when they outlive their financial resources.
Lazaroff believes every neighborhood should have a Holistic Community Living home. The first Holistic Community Living home is now prepared for final construction pending fund raising. You can help Holistic Community Living complete the first home by voting for them in Pepsi Refresh grant every day in September. You can register for their daily voting reminders at http://HolisticCommunityLiving.org/subscribe
To meet other Care2 members who care about this cause, join the group Holistic Community Living.