Latest Spirit Articles



Best of the Best: Four Communities Receive Top Honors

Four United Church Homes (UCH) communities were voted “Best of the Best  in the 2021 Readers’ Choice contests sponsored by local media groups. The awards covered numerous categories. Two communities were readers’ top choices by The Marietta Times: the Pines at The Glenwood Community was named the Best Assisted Living…


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Excellent Care Reflected in Quality Awards and Star Ratings at UCH

United Church Homes’ (UCH) commitment to quality care and continuous improvement in all areas of the organization runs deep. That commitment is especially relevant in highly regulated skilled nursing centers and assisted living communities that serve the most vulnerable residents. UCH benefits by both voluntary and government-mandated assessments that inform…


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Technology Helps Residents Live It! With Purpose

United Church Homes (UCH) constantly looks for ways to better serve its residents. Technology offers many opportunities to help residents achieve the three pillars of the LIVE IT! program: Live with Purpose; Social Connections; and Safe and Sound. There’s exciting news to share about various technology initiatives at UCH communities.…


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Leveraging Technology to Engage Residents

One might think that United Church Homes’ (UCH) focus on technology is only in response to the COVID-19 pandemic – a period in which people and organizations increasingly relied on technology to stay connected with friends, family and work. However, senior leadership and staff are always exploring ways to better…


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Sixth Annual Symposium Addresses Race and Age

The Ruth Frost Parker Center for Abundant Aging (RFPCAA) held its sixth annual Symposium, At the Intersection of Race and Age in the summer of 2021 in Columbus, Ohio. More than 120 individuals attended in person and online to hear several accomplished speakers discuss issues brought to the forefront of…


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Bringing Art Out in People

A lifetime of creativity and a little encouragement from family and friends sparked the teacher within Allan Norris and the idea for a painting class that has inspired many residents at The Glenwood Community. "Painting with Allan" began in 2017 after staff members at the community encouraged Allan to give…


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Communities Embracing Diversity

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) has long been a part of the mission, vision and values at United Church Homes. The core values, written in an acrostic which spells the word CHRIST, encourage employees to welcome everyone, honor the differences among them and reflect God’s love. For Avonne Bennett, Service…


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Uplands Village Celebrates 100 Years

Uplands Village is a community of forward thinking older adults who’ve chosen to live there for its beautiful, wooded setting on the Cumberland Plateau in Tennessee, and the opportunity to live active lives where doing good and helping others is a focus. In August, members and staff of the Life…


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Fund for Growth Enables Opportunities

In a 2020 study by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing and Care (NIC) on The Forgotten Middle, 54 percent of seniors cannot afford today’s senior housing and by 2029, 14 million seniors will fall into this category. The NIC expects this number to increase and noted the challenge…


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UCH Strengthens Focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

As a member of the Council for Health and Human Service Ministries of the United Church of Christ, United Church Homes (UCH) stands with a rich tradition of institutions who were chartered to help people work to end prejudice, poverty and discrimination. The UCH commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion…


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The Campaign for Abundant Life Announces Revised Goal of $45 Million

2020 marked the largest single donation in the history of United Church Homes by long-time friends who made an unparalleled lifetime estate gift of $17.5 million. This sacrificial gift inspired the creation of a new Fund for Growth to provide innovative programs and services at United Church Homes. “This generous…


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Service Coordination: Extending Care Beyond our Communities

As part of our mission to offer support for aging adults, UCH provides service coordination to more than 2,500 older adults living in owned and managed affordable housing communities, to more than 600 seniors living in the neighborhoods surrounding these communities and will soon offer this service to more of…


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Spitznagel Focused on Strategic Growth

Terry Spitznagel always knew she wanted a career that would allow her to be of service to others. But she knew she had a keen business sense and sought a path that would enable her to leverage both hard and soft skills. "I've been blessed with a career path where…


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Live It! Program Brings Compassion and Respect to Life

Our culture of compassion and respect sets United Church Homes apart, and our "I Live It" hospitality standards aim to show those we serve that we don't just say it-- we work to bring those values to life. Leading the charge is Amy Kotterman, Director of Customer Experience. Kotterman has…


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2020: UCH Team Spreads Hope, Resilient Spirit

March 13, 2020, is circled on United Church Homes senior leaders' calendars - just two days after COVID-19 was declared a national emergency in the U.S. That day began a baptism by fire for every UCH team member. UCH faced two challenges against the backdrop of one of the most…


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UCH Recertified in LGBT Aging Staff Training

SAGECare LGBT Cultural Competency Training for Senior Living Providers United Church Homes communities have been recertified in SAGECare cultural competency training for those working with the LGBT community. The program is offered through SAGE, a national advocacy and services organization that’s been looking out for LGBT older adults since 1978.…


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Integrated Community Employment Connects Older Adults and People with Disabilities

Creating an Inclusive Workplace Editor’s Note: Project Life, an integrated community employment program for people with developmental disabilities, has been postponed for the safety of participants, residents and staff at Fairhaven Community, due to the COVID-19 healthcare crisis. We hope the partnership will continue, stronger than ever, when we can…


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Secure Act 2020: What It Means for Your Estate Planning

By Paul Grassmann, JD, FCEP Thompson & Associates  This year, we saw major changes in the estate planning arena that will impact almost everyone. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019, better known as the SECURE Act, became effective Jan. 1. It effectively eliminated the Stretch…


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From Hallways to Households

United Church Homes' Commitment to Culture Change What jumps into your mind when you hear the words nursing home? Think about it. Did you picture a bright, friendly place, where staff and neighbors are like family? Did you envision an open floor plan and sun-filled community gathering spaces? Chances are,…


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UCH’s Newest Managed Community Finds Support Amid Pandemic

For Columbus Colony for Elderly Care staff, joining United Church Homes couldn’t have come at a better time. Staff, residents and families have been enveloped in the compassionate, inclusive UCH culture during an unprecedented time for senior living providers. On Feb. 3, United Church Homes Management and CCEC, a not-for-profit,…


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