Listen to Kristian Foden-Vencil as he talks about the future of Hopewell House...Hopewell House Helps Oregonians Die Better
Another angel has stepped up! Prominent Portland developer and philanthropist, Joe Weston has generously come forward with a $500,000 donation. Joe was born and raised in Portland and says his depression-era parents instilled in him and his two brothers a strong work ethic and compassion for others that inspired him to share his wealth with disadvantaged members of the community. “I’ve always championed the underdog.” Thank you for helping our community once again! This allows FHH to present a formal offer to Legacy for the purchase of Hopewell House.
This picture is on our GoFundMe Campaign page and has been seen in social media. We had several people ask about it and the family was generous enough to share their story.
My grandmother Say was a 100 years old, she came to this country in the mid 80s after living through the genocide of the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia. Grandma ran our household, while my parents worked. My parents adopted six Cambodian refugee orphans and had three biological
children, so it was a big and busy household. Grandma did most of the cooking at home. She was a wonderful cook. We were all very fortunate to have had our grandma with us for so long. She lived with our youngest sibling, her husband and their daughter, who is in this picture with her great-grandma at Hopewell House. So, when her time came and our medical team at Good Samaritan Hospital said she only had acouple of days left, we braced ourselves for this humongous loss. She was the matriarch of our family.
Since my sister took care of our grandma for over a decade, it was time for me to step in and help with the end of her life. The idea of a nursing home or any sort of assisted care in our culture and family is greatly frowned upon because it is our purpose to take care of our elders until the end.
I was 7 months pregnant with our third baby, it was summer and our other two children were not in school, so it was easy for them to stay with relatives if needed. I stayed with grandma through all the nights at Good Samaritan Hospital until she passed away at Hopewell House. Since grandma did not speak English, I was also her translator. I wanted to make sure all information between grandma and her medical team was relayed correctly. Thanks to the staff there, I didn't have to remember grandma's medicine on my own, and they were available any time to help me understand what different changes meant, and what to expect next. They knew how to adjust her body, helped her eat and drink, adjusted her medicines constantly, and kept her much more comfortable than we would have been able to at home.
Our grandma was very strong. She surprised every doctor and long-outlasted the predicted 3-4 days stay at Hopewell House. Grandma ended up staying there for about 25 days! Needless to say, I got to know the medical team, staff, and volunteers there rather well as I roomed with grandma for almost a month. I have never met a more kind, caring, or patient medical team in all my life. As a cancer patient, I have spent a lot of time in hospitals, so I had my own personal experiences to compare to. I was amazed every day. I was grateful every single day that my grandma was so fortunate to end her life in such a heavenly place. Everyone was more than accomodating during our time there.
We were given permission to host a Buddhist blessing with monks from our temple in the main living room. The monks did a traditional chant lasting about 40 minutes sending our grandmother's spirit peacefully to heaven. Guests came from all over the pacific northwest to come say their goodbyes. Our guests were in awe of how wonderful Hopewell was. They had endless compliments about the staff, the care and the gorgeous setting of Hopewell. It was a beautiful experience and a loving goodbye that Hopewell helped make happen.
Not only did the medical team take incredible care of grandma, but they took amazing care of me. Every morning, the house chef would make me a wonderful breakfast to help nourish my pregnant body. Every evening, we were greeted with the kindest nurses and volunteers. Stories were shared for many days up until the end. I will always remember the proper and beautiful send-off, when the nurse covered grandma with a pretty quilt, laid a flower on her chest, and the staff lined the hallways with their heads tilted down as her body was being transported. I saw this send-off every day I was there and it was heartwarming every time.
We are forever grateful for the utmost care Hopewell House provided for our grandmother and our family. We were so happy to hear that Hopewell may re-open. When we heard of Hopewell's closure, we were devastated because we could not imagine a world without a Hopewell House. I truly and strongly wish for Hopewell to be there for many families for as long as possible. This kind of end-of-life care is crucial to human existence and Hopewell was the best at it.
A newly incorporated non-profit called Friends of Hopewell House is overseeing a fundraising campaign to purchase the Tudor-style residential building that Hopewell occupied. They have the right to bid first on the property after the funds are assembled. Their plan is to provide comprehensive and innovative care in a home-like environment for patients who can’t receive care in their residence but do not want to be in a hospital.
One of the organization’s goals is to provide care that goes beyond the current Medicare Hospice Benefit.
We are excited to share that Friends of Hopewell House have received two significant financial contributions. A generous $1 million donation was made by the locally based Marcia H. Randall Foundation.
Marcia Randall, the Foundation Board Chair, visited a friend that died in the house a few weeks before it closed and her experience moved her. She has quietly been observing Friends of Hopewell House for a positive sign of forward momentum and the $500k donation given by prominent Portland people, Priscilla Bernard Wieden - who used to volunteer at the house - and Dan Wieden (of Wieden + Kennedy) inspired her to come forward with her donation.
In the aftermath of the closing of Hopewell House, the only hospice house in Portland, one final hope has arisen. After 30 years of providing compassionate and dignified end-of-life care, Hopewell sadly shut its doors in 2019. With only months to raise the funds, Friends of Hopewell House, a newly incorporated 501(c) nonprofit, has launched a $5 million capital campaign to purchase the property from Legacy Health Systems and once again open the beloved institution’s welcoming doors.
A year after Legacy Health closed Portland’s only free-standing hospice home, a group of supporters hopes to raise $5 million to bring it back to life...
A tremendous amount of gratitude to Priscilla Bernard Wieden who has stepped forward with a $500,000 donation to help save Hopewell House. Priscilla has volunteered at Hopewell House in the past and knows how special it is. She has been inspired by the community's support and we are on our way to making this happen.
We need the community's support and we have launched a GoFundMe fundraiser as a way for people to connect and to show larger donors that the community cares. It includes beautiful videos and images- please take a moment to look.
... If FHH can come up with the fair market value for the Hillsdale property, the group plans to reopen it as an inpatient hospice care facility under a nonprofit model. As planned, new management would lean less heavily on insurance reimbursements, relying instead on a combination of private funds via patient funding, bed day agreements with local health systems, Medicaid reimbursements, and philanthropy to sustain operations, said Scott MacEachern, FHH board member.
Legacy Health has announced its intention to sell Hopewell House. They will officially list the building and property for sale at the beginning of 2021, giving us, Friends of Hopewell House (FHH), until the end of the year to come up with the funds to purchase it. We anticipate the need to raise approximately 5 million dollars.
A dear friend of mine was at Hopewell House several years ago until his passing. He did not have any family left and his stay at Hopewell House was like home. All of us that came to visit with him each day were always warmly welcomed by the staff and volunteers. There were always snacks and beverages available to visitors on the big dining room table. I was told that the baked goods had been donated by the local bakeries, family members, and staff. The quality of care and dignity that was given to him by the staff was so heartfelt.
He had many friends that were musically talented and would arrive with their instruments…harp, violin, guitar, and play soft music while we visited.
As his time to leave drew near, the nurses checked on him very frequently and kept us informed during the process. It was a beautiful fall day and a large Japanese maple tree stood outside the window of his room, in all of its fall splendor. One of the nurses came in and opened the window just a little bit and said that this would make it easier for his spirit to pass on. All of us were so touched by this gesture and by the very simple ceremonial touches after his passing....a toast to his life with sparkling cider served to all of us and candlelight in the entry foyer that would be left on for a certain amount of time to honor him.
This is the kind of dignity and honoring of human life that would only occur at a place like Hopewell House. I’ve experienced hospice care for several friends and family over the years in the institutional settings of hospitals and nursing homes and found it to be lukewarm, at best, and impersonal. During those times, I wished that there were more places like Hopewell House.
If Hopewell House were to close it would absolutely be a great loss for our community. It’s a valuable treasure in our extended communities that should be sustained