Making an Impact
Since 2008, the Foundation has supported three local nonprofit organizations: Home Care Partners, the Elderly Ministries program of the Community Ministries of Rockville, and the Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA). The Family & Nursing Care Foundation has given $20,000 annually to each of these three organizations. These funds have annually provided more than 7,000 hours of comprehensive home care services, allowing for more low-income seniors to remain in their homes.
In addition, the Family & Nursing Care Foundation, a fund of the Greater Washington Community Foundation, has established a scholarship fund at Montgomery College to support students pursuing training to become Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs). Through a partnership with the college, the Foundation has established a $50,000 scholarship; $10,000 will be awarded in each year of a five-year period to selected CNA candidates applying for financial assistance.
“Every CNA certificate awarded by Montgomery College means a larger skilled workforce, lower unemployment, a stronger tax base, and decreased need for government assistance, as well as growth in the home care services field, where there is a vital need for help.”
— Angie Pickwick, Dean of Health Sciences, Montgomery College
Stories of Impact
Here are a couple of stories of grantees who have been directly helped by the Foundation.
Meet Mr. Engel
The Foundation recently awarded its second annual donation in the amount of $10,000 to The Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA), which will make 460 hours of home care available for at-risk, aging Holocaust survivors. Survivors like Josef Engel, 92 years “young,” who traveled to the U.S. with his brother to find opportunity 35 years ago. A career opera singer in Germany, Mr. Engel still has an amazing voice…one that he can exercise more frequently now that he is able to receive a few hours of caregiving services each day.
Mr. Engel lives alone and as a social person, this can be challenging. His daughter shared that she was happy that the grant will provide her father with companionship and help with the activities of daily living throughout the week.
Josephine remembers with awe the Spring day in 1945 when Franklin D. Roosevelt passed away, seeing people lined up at pay phones down the block and around the corner, all across New York, waiting to communicate the news to their friends and family. Of course, those were the days before cell phones, before every house had a television, and when Josephine, in her early twenties, took the train from the Bronx to Brooklyn College to earn her social work degree.
Fast forward seventy-two years to Josephine today, 93 years “young,” talkative, proud, and with a lifetime of experience. Josephine’s mind is as sharp as they come—she is witty, laughs heartily, and stays socially connected with friends and family. A client of the Elderly Ministries Program of the Community Ministries of Rockville, one of the grantee organizations supported by the Family & Nursing Care Foundation, Josephine receives home care support from her Caregiver, Baraka.
In addition to light housekeeping, laundry, and companionship, Baraka also assists Josephine with bathing and personal care. It is incredible to think that, were it not for Baraka spending just 2 hours a week with Josephine, she would likely be in a nursing home.
Meet Mr. Ricketts
Born and raised in Montgomery County, Mr. Ricketts spent his adolescence on a farm establishing the kind of work ethic you don’t see much anymore, waking up each day at 2 a.m. to milk the cows. He went on to join the military and raise six children.
Now 83 years old, Mr. Ricketts is a stroke survivor and suffers from ongoing back problems and Type 2 diabetes, but is determined to stay busy and work as hard as ever in his apartment. His various hobbies include harvesting Christmas cacti; making safety pin Christmas tree lamps; canning all sorts of food; painting; doing puzzles; and most impressively, latch hooking. His daughter taught him to latch hook and sells his creations at her shop in North Carolina. When she and the grandkids come to visit, they all have sleepovers in Mr. Ricketts’ one bedroom apartment.
Mr. Ricketts’ Caregiver comes to his apartment once a week for personal care, and he feels greatly indebted to her for keeping him company and keeping him clean.
Below are excerpts from letters written by Scholarship recipients.
”Thanks to the Family & Nursing Care Foundation CNA scholarship, I’ll be able to fulfill my dream of helping older adults.”
“ I am 19 years old, and am a first-generation graduate in my family. I am currently in the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) program at Montgomery College, where the professor is amazing and I am learning so much. I cannot wait until I am working in the field.
When I received the [scholarship award] letter, I could not help but hug my mother because of how far I have come—to be recognized by someone who is giving me a chance for the potential I have in this field. I am getting closer to my dream of becoming the first CNA in my family. This scholarship is a clear sign to me to not give up or stop this journey. I must continue on it while having the support of my family, friends, and most especially, YOU. You have impacted my dream in a really huge way. Thank you.”
“I had always felt in my heart that I was meant for more, but was not sure how to attain my goals. [Because of you], I am at Montgomery College and everything has turned around. I love caring for others, observing my surroundings, and listening. I want to be the best CNA I can because I have found my passion. Thank you for your support!”
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