Sisters Susan MacKenzie, Ellen Ladik and Mary Smith remember their late sister Beth who was one of the original residents at Haven Hill Home in Brecksville when it opened in 1983. Below is the Q&A with the three sisters.
Q: How long have you been involved with Blossom Hill and in what capacities?
A: Our sister Beth attended Children Forever classes in the mid-70’s, and our parents, Ben and Janet Warner, became involved when Ben joined the Board of Directors. Following the passing of our parents, Beth’s sisters, Ellen and Sue, who live out of state, have continued their support through donations and participating in golf outings. Mary sat on the Board of Directors of Blossom Hill for almost 40 years.
Q: In your experience as family members, what stands out about Blossom Hill? What about its services are unique or special?
A: Beth was one of the original residents of Haven Hill Home which opened in Brecksville in 1983. We were impressed with how well the staff understood Beth’s needs and wants and respected her personality. She was treated as an adult in all areas of her life including doing chores commensurate with her abilities. Although she was non-verbal, Beth could make herself understood through direct action, such as picking out her own clothes, selecting the nail polish she wanted, or stealing ice cream!
As an organization, Blossom Hill is topnotch. The respite care is a unique service most organizations don’t provide. We’ll always be grateful for the hospice care Beth received at the end of her life. The Haven Home staff was so accommodating to us and took such loving care of Beth.
As donors, what are some important qualities that you look for when deciding whether to give to an organization?
One thing we look for his how much of the donation goes directly to the organization. Because Blossom Hill is a non-profit with a volunteer board, 100% of the money goes to the organization. We have always been impressed by the longevity of senior staff which shows that Blossom Hill homes are well managed.
Q: What would you like to tell other people about Blossom Hill?
A: Beth was in a very safe, well-managed, loving environment. It was comforting for us to know how happy she was living in a Blossom Hill home. When Beth said, “Bye, bye”, it was her way of saying, “I am home. You may go.”
This story is part of the “Our Story Matters” campaign, aimed at bringing to life the stories of the people that make up our rich and vibrant organization.