What's this Grace House I'm hearing about?
Jun 03, 2018
Written by: Holly Klein
A new nonprofit organization has emerged in Akron to serve the indigent, homeless and abandoned individuals at the end of life who are often faced with spending their final days alone. Grace House Akron, Inc. provides a nurturing environment for individuals with terminal illnesses. The 501(c)(3) formed to meet the unserved needs of patients enrolled in a hospice program, who would otherwise spend their days alone or in undesirable conditions, which unfortunately is all too common in the Akron area.
Grace House Akron formed when healthcare professionals in Akron withnessed patients dieing alone and in undesireable conditions. Home founder and President, Holly Klein believed more could be done to allow all individuals a death with dignity.
For those of you who know me, you know I have been working on forming Grace House for a few years. You have heard me talk about Grace House, but how did all of this start?
It started with a name…..
In the early stages, we didn’t know what the home should be named. I searched many words and looked for many meanings. The word Grace came up frequently.
The word Grace means freely given or an unmerited gift. In many religions and cultures Grace is referred to as God’s gift. When I discovered that definition, I thought,” That’s it.” I wanted Grace House to be a gift, a place where everyone can live and be in an environment where all are cared for and all are loved.
"All are cared for and all are loved"
We found our name, next was our Board formation. I had the privilege of meeting Nick and Cindy Browning when I worked as a hospice administrator. Nick volunteered to serve as Chairperson of our Board and we began to build our Board. Grace House Board of Directors include: Nicholas Browning, Brian Emich, Brian Moore, Dr. Kevin Dieter, Terry Albanese, Anne Armao, Kate Bame, Lisa Dalpiaz, Beth Mullen, Karen Mullen, Barb Palmisano, Dave Pastir, Dr. David Peter, Dr. Steven Radwany, Dr. Molly Scantling, and Ted Stitzel.
We are now planning to build a 6 bedroom home where services will be provided without charge to allow a dignified death without financial barriers, something that is not currently offered to Akron’s homeless or working poor. Once land is secured, we will launch a capital campaign to raise funds. In the meantime, Grace House Akron looks to foster relationships with the community, educate the region and connect with future partners.
We would like to welcome the community to learn more about Grace House Akron and our mission of providing a loving home to terminally ill individuals that do not have a caregiver or cannot afford a caregiver is unique to the Greater Akron community. We would like to share our vision of all community members having access to compassionate care at the end of life.
Be on the lookout for additional community outreach events in the future. If you would like to learn more about Grace House Akron and its mission, please visit gracehouseakron.org, or reach out personally to Holly Klein, President of Grace House Akron, Inc.