Golden Age Home celebrates 60th anniversary
By: Nicole Burnett
On November 15, 1960, Golden Age Home opened its doors to accept senior adults into the home. The home was a dream turned into realty for a group of men and women of the Methodist Churches of the Austin District. For four years this dedicated group worked to establish Golden Age Home not only as a physical structure and legal corporation but also as “the place for companionship, peace and comfort with independence.”
Golden Age Home was one of many homes that were part of the Methodist program, Homes for Older Persons. To develop these homes, responsible, devoted individuals in church and community gave freely of their time and energy, through creative leadership, talent and money to these buildings and operations. Some were only lightly related to the Church but sponsorship by the Church assured stability, integrity, permanence, and responsible trusteeship.
One original brochure stated, “those without families will come and find those who care for them as though they were their own. Those who have few friends, are lonely or in sorrow, will find here sympathy and love.” And so, more than 5,000 people have become part of the Golden Age Home family during the past 60 years. Some of those members where employees while others resided within the walls, but all found a place that has stayed true to its mission “to provide excellent, quality service to older adults in a Christian environment.”
At the beginning of 2020, we began a program an intergenerational program. This program included hosting a Music Together class with preschool children, a reading mentorship program at one of the local elementary schools and volunteering at the local food pantry along with many more events planned. While those programs are currently on hold, they brought great joy to all involved and we look forward to restarting them in the fall.
Already this year of 2020, there have been increased costs and a decreased ability for normal resident activities. Social activity is very important for individuals who are isolated from friends and family. We have implemented ‘outside the box’ visitation procedures that not only provide protection, but also help our residents combat the added loneliness that has come with the current health crisis. It is always our goal to provide our residents with comfort and peace of mind. Our dedicated team has stepped-up to ensure our residents are receiving the extra care physically, mentally, socially and spiritually needed to de-stress during this time of decreased outings and visitation.
From Golden Age Home’s conception, there was a giving fund set up to minister to people who are unable to pay the full cost of living in the Home. Golden Age Home received its nonprofit status in 1964 which it continues to operate under today. Golden Age Home is dedicated to keeping its cost affordable. In the late 90’s, a grant from TDCHA was secured allowing GAH to designate 16 rooms of the Assisted Living to those needing subsidized housing. 20 years later, GAH continues to seek grants and donations through private foundations, churches, businesses and individuals to keep this program in operation.
Currently, the Board of Directors is comprised of 10 members. These members are men and women from Lockhart, Luling, Seguin, Kyle and Elgin area. This diverse group remains 90% from the Methodist churches. Our generous board members continually provide time, expertise, advice, and available donations to further our mission.
This fall, Golden Age Home will host a public celebration for its 60th anniversary. At this time, we are seeking stories, photos and other general information from the public of those who have been involved in any way with this ministry during the last 60 years. Did you volunteer as a child? Did your loved one reside in the home? Were you an employee at Golden Age Home? Do you have a newspaper clipping that highlights an activity at Golden Age Home? You are encouraged to submit these things by mail Attn: 60th Anniversary, 1505 S. Main St., Lockhart, TX 78644 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now more than ever, nonprofits need your support. There have been tough times in the past 60 years. Those times have drawn us closer to the Lord as we relied on Him to provide for the needs of the home, its’ occupants and team members. We are committed to staying the course and excited to see how God uses this time to prepare us for the next 60 years.