Nursing home fundraising goal reached by auxiliary

MIDDLEBURY — A two-year commitment of $150,000 from the Porter Medical Center Auxiliary has capped off a two-month fundraising campaign that has attracted more than $320,000 in community donations in support of a special renovation project at Helen Porter Rehabilitation and Nursing.
“We have been overwhelmed by the response of our community to this appeal to create a state-of-the-art short-term rehabilitation unit and a home-like end-of-life care suite at Helen Porter, and now we can move forward with finalizing our renovation plans for the project,” PMC President Dr. Fred Kniffin in a statement this week. “When we launched our fundraising efforts in early October, we felt that raising $300,000 by the end of the year would be a challenge, but we have been amazed at the community support and we are deeply gratified by the leadership commitment by the PMC Auxiliary, which has put us over the top.”
The PMC Auxiliary is a membership organization led by a board of 18 local citizens who organize three fundraising events annually and oversee the work of the Round Robin Upscale Resale Shop. Each year the Auxiliary donates tens of thousands of dollars in support of Porter projects, and has donated well over $1 million over the past 20 years.
“Porter and Helen Porter are invaluable parts of our community,” said current Auxiliary President Anne Collins. “We (the Auxiliary) have been supporting the work of Porter since 1934, and are pleased to continue our partnership with them.”
Since early October, the leadership of Porter has been working closely with the board of Addison Respite Care Home, known as ARCH, to raise funds and plan the end-of-life suite portion of the project. These plans call for two specially designed end-of-life rooms, each with a family room and access to a kitchenette and outdoor courtyard. Additionally, the renovation project will result in a renovated short-term rehabilitation unit with both single and semi-private rooms to meet the growing community demand for sub-acute services.
“Helen Porter really provides many invaluable services to our community, including traditional long-term/nursing home care, palliative care, memory care and short-term rehabilitation services,” Kniffin added. “This project will provide our community with new facilities that will support the outstanding work of our Helen Porter staff in caring for a wide-spectrum of needs.”
ARCH Board member Joel Miller believes that this project will represent a major step forward in the collaboration between his organization and Porter for the benefit of the community.
“The completion of the new ARCH suites will realize the long-term goal of the ARCH mission: to provide the finest home-like setting for our friends and neighbors at end of life as well as a comfortable space for their families to gather,” Miller said. “We are grateful to PMC leadership for the opportunity to collaborate with them in this successful fund raising campaign and to the many, many folks who have donated to this effort.”
ARCH has donated $65,000 of its own funds to support this project.
Porter is working with Bread Loaf Corporation on the design and construction of this $900,000 project, with plans for a winter start and early summer completion.

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