Serenity Village of Barry County is a non-profit organization established in 2015. The goal is to develop an alternative homelike environment for terminally ill hospice patients to live out their final days in peace and dignity, surrounded by those they love. Executive Director of Serenity Village, Thomas DeVault, stated that they have raised over $2,000,000 dollars. Unfortunately, the dramatic rise in interest rates, continued supply chain shortages, and spiraling construction costs have left a shortfall of nearly $1.3 million. To bridge this difference, they need the help of our amazing and generous community to remain patient, supportive, and willing to contribute. In addition, they have applied for federal government funding through the USDA in hopes of starting the building process. Once they have reached their fundraising goal, construction will begin on a new 7,500-square-foot home for hospice patients, situated quietly on the north edge of Hastings.
The biggest issues they have faced are the ones out of their control. “The forces that have been working against us to this point (supply chain issues, higher borrowing costs for contractors, rampant inflation, interest rate spikes, and labor shortages) are still there and show little sign of fading anytime soon”, says DeVault. “Everyone in our community wants to see us building, especially those who have been working on this project for over 8 years, but it would be irresponsible for our board to begin construction if there is not a sustainable way to finish it.”
While additional money is being raised and gap funding is being sought, existing donations are being carefully guarded and invested in short-term CD’s. All operating expenses have been cut back to preserve cash and cash flow.
“I feel with certainty that providing a peaceful home for families to care for each other, to love each other, to spend time with each other in those final days of life, will be immeasurably impactful”, says DeVault. “We all believe in this project and the benefits it will provide to our community. We are extremely appreciative that our donor base and community have been wonderfully supportive over the years. The board and campaign leadership continue to work as hard as we can to make this dream a reality. But we are asking once again for your consideration to minimize our need for financing by making an additional pledge and/or sharing our story with others so that they may do so this giving season.”
If you would like to donate or learn more, please visit their website: www.serenitybc.org. If you would like monthly updates on the progress of Serenity Village, you are encouraged to email DeVault at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for their monthly newsletter, The Village Voice.