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Published on March 11th, 2016 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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Still Hopes Launches Wellness-Focused Community Expansion

A two-phase project brings wellness-centered independent living and innovative “small home” care to the Midlands’ premier Life Plan Community.

(Columbia, SC) — The Board of Trustees of Still Hopes Episcopal Retirement Community has announced a significant expansion to serve adult residents, which will include a new five-story building with 83 apartments, including a variety of styles and sizes. Still Hopes, a 44-acre, faith-based Life Plan Community is currently home to nearly 300 residents.

“About 15 years ago, our community became very wellness motivated because we understood good health and fitness are key ingredients to living a meaningful, high quality life,” said Danny Sanford, Executive Director and CEO of Still Hopes. “This expansion will allow us to enhance that focus, in newly-created living spaces that embrace bringing the outdoors in, and integrating calming waterscapes, plants and natural light into everyday life.”

The building, which will offer under-building parking, will overlook the community’s protected natural forest preserve. Graciously appointed one- and two-bedroom apartments will serve independent living residents and will be in close proximity to the community’s state-of-the-art, 12,000 square-foot Marshall A. Shearouse Center for Wellness. “This expansion helps fulfill our mission to a greater extent. We’re helping residents focus on their wellbeing, so they can live fuller and happier lives,” said Sanford.

Community plans include floor-to-ceiling windows in common areas, open floor plans, extensive use of natural materials, plus advanced air and water purification systems, touchless faucets, sound damping walls and flooring, energy efficient home automation and smart lighting systems. Along with under-building parking, residents will enjoy easy access to the community’s award-winning wellness center with a heated indoor pool and 10-acre forest with walking trails, exercise stations and natural pond.

In addition, Still Hopes’ expansion includes a new health care building creating three neighborhood-style households for a higher level of care. Each small home will have 16 bedrooms and bathrooms, plus shared spaces including an open, eat-in kitchen and an inviting living room. The innovative design means each household has dedicated, cross-trained staff, while providing easy access to services such as housekeeping, dining, and therapy.

“The design gives residents more privacy. They don’t have to see family and visitors in their bedroom,” said Sanford. “They can invite them into the living room or kitchen. It truly feels like a home.”

The small home model supports better clinical outcomes, including lower hospitalization rates and fewer falls, and reduces staff turnover. The household layout includes excellent resident-to-staff ratios providing residents with greater personal and social contact.

Still Hopes plans to complete both projects within five years. “This expansion will allow us to meet a growing demographic who crave independent-style living in larger apartment homes and also to provide state-of-the-art care that helps other residents live vibrant, meaningful lives,” said Sanford.

One aspect of the community that will not change is the 15-acre natural forest preserve. “That land is holy to us,” said Sanford. “It’s there for our residents to enjoy and is a priceless greenspace for our larger community.”

Still Hopes is a Life Plan Community offering a full continuum of care for seniors. The community’s Indigo Woods neighborhood currently offers independent luxury cottage living complete with a two-car garage, generous floor plan, modern interiors, stainless steel appliances and outdoor living areas. Residents can also enjoy maintenance-free apartment living with features such as high ceilings, walk-in closets, and connectivity to myriad amenities.

For residents requiring a greater level of care, the community offers Medicare-certified rehabilitation, in-home assistance, skilled nursing and memory support. Concierge suites are available for those who wish to live independently with support for activities of daily living. Solutions for Living at Home brings superior home care to individuals of all ages living at Still Hopes or in Columbia. Caregivers of adults who need assistance due to dementia or Alzheimer’s can turn to our day program for educational and recreational programs that challenge minds, keep bodies moving and lift spirits.

Every Still Hopes resident enjoys community living complete with lifelong learning programs, an onsite wellness center with a heated pool, and a chapel for ecumenical worship – all within a short drive to downtown Columbia for shopping, dining and entertainment. The community’s innovative Main Street is a center of social confluence that includes a skylight atrium, market, library, café, business center, salon, four gourmet-dining venues, a piano bar and large entertainment venues.

To learn more about the new expansion or about joining the Still Hopes community, please contact Jessica Boyle, Marketing Coordinator, at (803) 739-5040. Discover more at stillhopes.org or call (803) 739-5040 to schedule a visit.

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