The leadership of Serenity Village Thursday announced the Time to Build campaign, a $2.7 million fundraising effort to fund construction of a six-bed hospice house in Barry County.
Since 2015, local community leaders have been working on a plan to bring an end-of-life facility to Hastings. Currently, the closest hospice house for Barry County residents is nearly an hours-long drive away. The distance can make it challenging for families to regularly see their hospice family member and presents difficulties for the patient to be far from home, family and friends at the end of their life.
Serenity Village plans to provide an alternative, homelike environment for dying hospice patients where they can continue to be cared for by their family, but also have assistance from professional staff to give the family needed rest and support. Serenity Village will be an independent entity, not affiliated with any particular hospice. Residents will continue to be cared for by their hospice team with whom they have developed a caring relationship.
Hearing of the plan a few years ago, Al and Pam Jarvis donated some property just east of Hastings Mutual Insurance Company for the construction of Serenity Village. Two additional anonymous donors provided initial start-up funds for organizing an effort to bring Serenity Village to Hastings. As planning began to raise funds for the new facility, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and planning was delayed for several months.
By May of 2020, the Time to Build campaign was initiated and has now raised more than $2,300,000, over 85% of the overall $2.7 million campaign goal. Community donors, local businesses, and area foundations have supported the campaign to date.
At Thursday’s public announcement of the fund drive, Campaign Co-Chairs Michael Anton (retired pastor, Grace Lutheran Church) and Carla Wilson-Neil (retired COO, Spectrum Health Pennock Hospital) invited the public to join in the fundraising effort which will continue through the summer.
Wilson-Neil announced that the campaign has already received support from many local foundations, area businesses, and generous community donors. “This community continues to amaze us with their generosity! What began as a dream just a few years ago is now very close to reality. Our Campaign Cabinet joins me in thanking the community for their meaningful gifts and we now invite the broader community to help us complete this campaign effort. We welcome gifts of all sizes.”
Today's announcement marks the beginning of the public phase of the $2.7 million campaign.
“If you want to join us in bringing Serenity Village to Hastings, please visit our web site: www.serenitybc.org.” said Thomas DeVault, Executive Director. “We have many ways to give and we are excited to move quickly to our construction phase.” Construction is anticipated to begin in early 2023.