Workforce Solutions and Baptist Retirement Community Partner to Provide CNA Certification Courses and Training for San Angelo CNAs

Wanting to provide certified nursing aid (CNA) certification courses and quality, hands-on training for aspiring CNA’s in San Angelo, Baptist Retirement Community (BRC), a continuing care retirement community in the Concho Valley, is partnering with Workforce Solutions to provide these educational opportunities three to four times a year. The pass-rate for these classes is exceptional, as every student has graduated. In recognition of the community’s efforts, BRC was nominated for the “Local Employer Service Award” and for “Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) 2019 Small Employer of the Year.” Mary Jackson, director of human resources for Baptist Retirement Community, has facilitated the relationship throughout her career of more than two decades.

“Providing these classes allows us to offer quality training to those interested in pursuing careers in the medical field, and many of our students use this as a stepping-stone to get into nursing programs,” said Jackson. “The classes also allow us the opportunity to let students know of open positions within our organization, and we hire approximately one-third of the students that go through each class. Even if they choose to work someplace else after receiving their certification, we hope that they might be inclined to join our team in the future. Through the clinicals and learning environment, we enjoy showing students how positive and supportive the work environment and team at Baptist Retirement Community is.”

The second course wrapped up in June, and the third course began on August 5. The courses are three weeks long and cover classroom and lab skills from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. during the first two weeks, followed by clinicals in the third week. Clinicals consist of three 12-hour days of hands-on experience shadowing CNA’s and serving residents in different capacities. The program is made possible by the Texas Talent Connection Grant. Baptist Retirement Community contributes by providing the space and instructor(s) for the course. Workforce Solutions has a team member who is dedicated to recruiting students before the courses start. One of the community’s recent new hires, Kevin Lord, learned of the opportunity through Workforce Solutions, completed his training in June and started his first day at BRC on July 1.

“My family has served in the medical field for a long time, and I was ready to try it out after working in the mechanic field for 10 years,” said Lord. “I was not sure where I was going to apply after getting my certification, but I ultimately fell in love with the work environment and residents at Baptist Retirement Community. The team at BRC is supportive and friendly. Everyone loves their job and walks around with smiles on their faces. During my clinicals, I got to interact with residents and found that their personalities are amazing. The three I worked hands-on with are the main reason I chose to work at BRC. Seeing the compassion that the team had for these residents also made me want to be a part of the team. It is a unique work environment that I did not want to pass up. I knew I wanted to work alongside these health care professionals every day and be here for these residents. I value delivering care with the dignity and respect these residents deserve. I am grateful for the CNA certification course, because, without it, I would not have gotten my training and learned of what awaited me at Baptist Retirement Community.”

“All of the students are very appreciative and feel the course adequately prepares them for their new role as a CNA,” said Jackson. “We have done several projects with Workforce Solutions over the years, and we greatly appreciate the partnership. Overall, working with Workforce Solutions is positive and supportive. We bounce ideas back and forth to come up with amazing opportunities that enhance people’s lives. Our goals are to provide quality training that helps people gain experience and get back into the workforce. We are both willing to try new things, and it is very rewarding to do so.”

Baptist Retirement Community also offers a summer internship program where they take in four students and teach them skills pertaining to maintenance, housekeeping, life enrichment activities for residents and clerical/admin. The senior living community also offers positions to people who need to gain experience in a certain area or have been out of the workforce for a while.

If you are interested in covering this story or setting up an interview, please contact Lauren Witt via phone at 214-378-7970 ext. 306 or email at: lwitt@thepointgroup.com”.

Residents of Buckner Westminster Place pack snacks for local students

With the school year underway, local students are busy heading to class and after-school activities. However, there are many who return home on the weekends with little to no access to regular meals. Residents at Buckner Westminster Place want to change that for the Longview community.

Twice a month throughout the school year, the residents of the senior living community gather together to prepare 50 snack packs filled with food and treats like macaroni and cheese, oatmeal, cheese crackers, apple juice and pudding that are then distributed to students of South Ward Elementary.

“This is our fourth school year to participate in the snack pack program, and it’s something that residents are always eager to join,” said Bob Webster, a resident at Buckner Westminster Place. “We’re always looking for ways to give back to the greater community, and this is an opportunity that enables our senior community to support local children and ensure their needs are met. By providing these snack packs, we know students are going home on the weekend with something to eat and won’t go hungry.”

The program began in 2012 while Melanie Wright was volunteering with Buckner Children and Family Services as part of the organization’s summer feeding program. Through the summer program, Melanie contemplated what could be done throughout the year to ensure they were continuing to meet the needs of these children all year long.

“It’s incredibly important to serve our local community and help these kids get the nutrition they need,” Melanie said. “Through this program, we’re able to show them a little extra bit of love and kindness they may not experience otherwise. We also want them to know that their community cares about them and wants them to be happy. It’s a joy to see how much the residents at Westminster Place love doing this and it’s really a win-win for everyone.”

“At Buckner Westminster Place, we believe in the importance of community and doing what we can to support one another,” said David Sims, executive director of Buckner Westminster Place. “We’re honored to have the opportunity to support local students and ensure they have everything they need to be successful, and that includes access to a meal. We hope that by sharing our involvement in the snack pack program that we can shed light on the issue of hunger in our community and inspire others to find ways they can give back.”
[/av_textblock]

Baptist Retirement Community dedicates Elsie Gayer Chapel

Members of the Baptist Retirement Community came together with Buckner Retirement Services staff to dedicate the Elsie Gayer Chapel. On hand were members of the Gayer family, as well as members of the Baptist Memorial Ministries Board and Buckner International Board of Trustees.

The renaming of the chapel after Elsie Gayer is part of an $8.4 million renovation project to Baptist Retirement Community, announced in Oct. 2018. The planned updates include renovations to the high-rise independent living apartment building and the Sagecrest nursing building while also providing for road repairs and added curb appeal to the community, which has served seniors in San Angelo since 1951.

Elsie Gayer, RN, founded the Baptist Memorials Geriatric Hospital in 1951 and served as its administrator until 1968. The hospital later pivoted into senior living and was renamed Baptist Retirement Community.

A plaque honoring Gayer was unveiled at the ceremony, noting how her “efforts and passion persist today as an enduring symbol of senior living that is Inspiring Happiness™ in San Angelo and throughout Texas.”

“Every professional studying the history of senior care should know the name Elsie Gayer,” said Aaron Hargett, BRC’s executive director. “She was a remarkable woman who touched the lives of so many senior adults by ensuring they were loved and lived with dignity as members of a community.”

The updates and new construction to BRC are part of a long-term campus renovation and repositioning plan, which already has seen the construction of The Crest, a new assisted living memory care building, which opened in 2016 on the 100-acre campus. Buckner affiliated with Baptist Retirement Community in 2010. It is one of six Texas senior living communities owned and managed by BRS.

The digital 2018 Buckner Advent Devotional Guide is here! Get yours today!

Advent Devotional Guide

Faith is the tie that binds us. Regardless of our backgrounds, life stories or differences, it’s our faith in Jesus Christ as Savior that binds us together as brothers and sisters. And what better time to come together as a family of faith than during the Advent season?

Advent Devotional GuideThis year, Buckner would like to offer you a special way to celebrate the birth of Christ with our FREE digital 2018 Buckner Advent Devotional Guide. Inside, you will find weekly devotions on the Advent themes of hope, peace, love and joy as well as thoughtful reflection questions to help you and your family meditate on the themes of the Advent season throughout the week.

Through these devotions, we hope you and your family can have meaningful conversations and grow closer together this Advent season. Sign up today to receive your FREE digital 2018 Buckner Advent Devotional Guide as well as weekly devotional emails in your inbox during the Advent season.

sign up now

Baptist Retirement Community Launching $8.4 Million Renovation Project

two seniors laughing

Leaders at Buckner Retirement Services announced today a series of major campus renovations at Baptist Retirement Community. The planned updates represent $8.4 million in changes to key features of the senior living community and are scheduled to begin immediately, according to Buckner officials.

Areas slated for renovation include the high-rise independent living apartment building and the Sagecrest nursing building while also providing for road repairs and added curb appeal to the community, which has served seniors in San Angelo since 1951.

The plan also calls for the demolition of the Elsie Gayer nursing building while maintaining the existing chapel, maintenance and laundry buildings. The chapel at BRC will be named for Elsie Gayer at a special ceremony in December.

Charlie Wilson, senior vice president for Buckner Retirement Services, said the planned changes to the community represent “a major repositioning of Baptist Retirement Community, which will allow us to offer a greater experience for our resident members and is a real investment in San Angelo and the entire Concho Valley region.”

Aaron Hargett, BRC’s executive director, said he’s excited about the new campus plan. “Baptist Retirement Community has always had a great reputation in the Concho Valley for quality services. We’ve led the Concho Valley in the number of services we offer as the only Continuing Care Retirement Community in the Concho Valley. Now, we will offer these services in an updated, beautiful campus setting.”

The updates and new construction are part of a long-term campus renovation and repositioning plan, which already has seen the construction of The Crest, a new assisted living memory care building, which opened in 2016 on the 100-acre campus. Buckner affiliated with Baptist Retirement Community in 2010. It is one of six Texas senior living communities owned and managed by BRS.

Ventana by Buckner reaches construction milestone

Ventana by Buckner, a $140 million luxury high-rise community for seniors in North Dallas, marked the project’s halfway point with a topping out ceremony.

The milestone included the raising of a ceremonial beam and tree to the top of the north tower. Speakers included Charlie Wilson, senior vice president for Buckner Retirement Services; Rick Pruett, executive director of Ventana by Buckner; and Albert Reyes, president/CEO of Buckner International. The trio thanked workers with general contractor Whiting-Turner, who began construction on June 12, 2017.

“We are extremely grateful to every single person who has labored to bring Ventana by Buckner to its midway milestone in only 13 months,” said Pruett. “The high quality of work put into the construction process is representative of the high-quality of life Ventana will provide its residents with luxurious features and amenities and excellent health and wellness services.”

Ventana by Buckner is Dallas’ first and only luxury high-rise Life Care community. Its adjacent 12-story towers will house 189 independent apartment homes, including one-, two- and three-bedroom options and ranging from 800 to 1,900 square feet. Ventana includes the full continuum of care for senior adults, with assisted living, nursing care, memory care and a rehabilitation component.

The community will also include underground parking, multiple dining venues and lounges, spacious common areas, modern wellness and fitness centers, heated indoor pool, salon and spa, movie theater, rooftop garden, multiple patios and more.

Ventana was designed by Dallas award-winning architect David Dillard and his firm, D2 Architecture. It will open to its first residents by mid-2019.

Buckner opened its first retirement community in 1954. Ventana by Buckner will be its sixth retirement care property in Texas.

For more information about Ventana by Buckner, visit VentanaByBuckner.com.

Ventana by Buckner changing Dallas skyline

Once, it was just a dream to create the pre-eminent senior living community in Dallas. With each passing hour, that dream moves closer to becoming reality.

Each day, Ventana by Buckner climbs a little higher as it takes its place in the Dallas skyline. Already, the structure stands out along Central Expressway. It’s newly installed windows glisten in the sunlight. It stands as a beacon of a bright future for future residents.

“This growth is exciting!” said Charlie Wilson, senior vice president of Buckner Retirement Services. “We take our calling to serve seniors seriously and do whatever we can to sere them with excellence.”

Ventana is proud to offer its residents a comprehensive range of hospitality services and a maintenance-free lifestyle, along with a full complement of recreational, culinary and wellness opportunities. Looking for a five-star senior living experience? Look no further than Ventana.

From our pristine fitness center to our sparkling community pool, amenities here will set a new standard in senior living. Services at Ventana are comprehensive, providing each resident with the peace of mind that comes with knowing their every need has been anticipated and addressed.

Learn more at ventanabybuckner.com.

Faith Focus: Seeing what you didn’t before

Last week, Buckner Senior Living and Cooper Aerobics announced a collaboration that will bring Cooper experts to the Ventana by Buckner campus in Dallas. In the process of the day, I had the privilege of meeting Dr. Kenneth Cooper and learn more about what sets him apart.

Fifty years ago, Cooper wrote Aerobics, which introduced the world to the benefits of aerobic workouts. Prior to the book, many people were discouraged to exercise after the age of 40 as experts believed it would shorten a person’s lifespan.

When Cooper’s book not only contradicted the contemporary thought, but put forward the notion that regular exercise would actually prolong health and lives, he was called a crackpot. Potential patients were steered away from him. But he stuck it out and his theories have proven true.

He’s revolutionized what it means to be healthy as we age. He’s even proving it day after day personally, having run more than 38,000 miles at the age of 87. His concepts have helped popularize the notion of each person needing to walk 10,000 steps daily. He trained a World Cup team. He has promoted healthy living around the globe.

And all that has led people to live far different lives than they once believed possible.

That struck me as extremely similar to what we do through Buckner Family Pathways and Family Hope Centers: Change individual’s and families’ perceptions of themselves and empower them to live lives they didn’t think possible.

Like Cooper’s efforts, the work of changing someone’s long-held beliefs is difficult. But just like the good doctor, we have examples we can point to where lives have been transformed. Single parents who have graduated from college. Families that are strong and raising amazing young people. Cycles of poverty that have been broken.

The impossible is possible – even in your life.

Do you believe it?

Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. –Matthew 17:20

© Buckner International. - Developed by LevLane
Font Resize
Contrast