Monetary Gifts Support Residents, Projects and Programming

Published: Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Every day, Lutheran SeniorLife serves 3,000 older adults at our senior living communities, and through our community-based programs and services.

Last year alone, Lutheran SeniorLife provided $3.3 million in benevolent care to ensure that those we serve can live their Abundant Life®.

“It is our moral obligation to provide for our residents and program participants. It’s a promise we make to ourselves and those in our care – not just at Passavant and St. John Communities, but also to those who participate in our community-based programs,” said Jane Bittcher, president of the Lutheran SeniorLife Foundation.

In our senior living communities, benevolent care funds are used to supplement payment for those who have outlived their financial resources, for special projects such as the new gardens at the Abundant Life Center, for structural improvements and programming through donations made for those specific purposes.

Often, Bittcher said, the Foundation can apply for grant monies from foundations, private corporations and the government to cover expenses as well.

For example, a grant was recently received that allowed the Foundation to purchase several senior-friendly computers that are now being used at various locations to help residents stay connected to family and friends. In addition, many of the buses used to transport LIFE participants to and from the Centers and doctors’ appointments were purchased through grants.

The Foundation also works to raise awareness and financial support for seniors who participate in community-based programs such as the LIFE Programs, Valley Care, VNA, Western PA and Lutheran Service Society.

“These programs are much more mission-driven, so we hold special events such as the March for Meals program to support Meals on Wheels in Beaver County; the Black Tie Bingo for Lutheran Service Society; the Friendship Luncheon to help fund VNA; and the Purse Bash to support LIFE Programs, to supplement the cost of the care these programs provide,” she said.

“It is important for people in the communities to know that, no matter where they choose to live, there are programs out there to keep them healthy and safe.”

Many people also choose the planned giving option, Bittcher said, by remembering Lutheran SeniorLife in their will, or through other planned options.

The Foundation holds several seminars every year featuring experts who can educate seniors on their planned giving options, and help them to better understand how to customize their donations to fulfill personal goals of financially supporting their families, churches and faith-based organizations like Lutheran SeniorLife.

“There is not a donation that is too large or too small,” Bittcher added. “It is up to the donor how they would like their money to be spent, whether it’s for a specific project, or for benevolent care. But no matter how people choose to donate, every dollar helps our residents continue to live their Abundant Life®.

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