The Story of Nithview Community
Nithview Community provides comfortable homes where seniors experience life with dignity and respect, supported and served by valued staff and volunteers.
We believe ….
. . Christian principles guide our actions.
Nithview Community was established based on the principles of the Mennonite church. These principles include compassion, mutual aid, peace and justice, and service to others.
. . staff members are integral to the services we provide.
Staff members live out the mission of Nithview Community in practical terms. They share their lives with residents and their families, continually demonstrating their dedication, commitment and skill as they carry out the task of creating a caring community.
. . volunteers make a “difference”.
Dedicated volunteers enhance the quality of life that residents experience by adding value to Nithview’s programs and services. Volunteers also help to maintain relationships and connections with the surrounding community.
. . in service that provides choices and personal preferences.
Our commitment is to give opportunities for individuals to express their opinions and concerns in an atmosphere of caring and love where they know that those comments will be considered. The well being of the individual has priority in an environment of dignity and respect.
. . in promoting a community of “wellness”.
We seek to consider the “whole” person, taking into account the physical, spiritual, social and emotional needs of an individual while balancing personal preferences with community harmony.
. . in providing opportunities for growth and development.
Nithview Community strives to enhance the development of knowledge, skills and abilities of staff, volunteers and the people we serve.
. . In striving for quality improvement.
Nithview Community is a leader in providing quality care, housing and programs. It is our intention to provide innovative services and programs, balancing this with integrity as we meet the needs of residents and their families.
. . in partnering with surrounding communities.
Where possible Nithview Community will
- make our facilities, programs and services available
- provide resources for local churches, schools, service clubs, and other groups
- support community initiatives
- provide opportunity for the surrounding communities to give support
- provide volunteer and employment opportunities for local individuals
It is our objective to build & maintain a healthy community where residents can continue to be active and vital participants.
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In 1967, the Western Ontario Mennonite Conference appointed a study committee to investigate the possibilities of building a new Home for the Aged and selling its Nursing Homes located in Tavistock and Milverton. By 1968, delegates had decided to locate the new home in New Hamburg under a completely new charter. Tri-County Mennonite Homes (TCMH) was born and today it continues to own and operate Nithview Community and Greenwood Court, two seniors’ continuum of care homes and Aldaview Services, a program supporting adults with developmental disabilities.
While TCMH has grown significantly over the last 45 years, its growth has not always been easy. Many of its expansion projects required much perseverance, patience, and stamina to get underway. Overcoming obstacles and roadblocks almost seemed to be the norm, rather than an occasional occurrence. However, the strength of the original vision, and the encouragement of its member constituency, seemed to provide the required energy for the Board and Administration to push forward to accomplish its goals.
On April 2, 1972, Nithview Home admitted its first residents and began the journey to its current status as a Continuum of Care Home, providing accommodation and programs to more than 200 residents living in garden homes, apartments, assisted and supported living suites and long-term care. Over the years, more than 5 major construction projects and renovations have been undertaken, with the most recent one being completed in 2004. In recognition of the variety of programming and accommodation options now available, Nithview Home and Seniors’ Village have been renamed as Nithview Community.
Some of the early plans of the Board took different directions when obstacles were encountered. The Milverton home, slated to be sold when Nithview was built, continued to be operated by TCMH until 1994. After a failed attempt to sell the Milverton home, and a number of failed attempts to acquire more beds and reconstruct the home, an invitation to move Milverton’s beds to Stratford and build a new complex there brought new hope for a solution to a difficult situation. News that TCMH might build in Stratford prompted the Avon Mennonite Church to initiate a meeting to inquire whether TCMH might be interested in a joint project that would include their church as a partner.
In 1994, that partnership became a reality. Greenwood Court opened its doors to a continuum of care that included long-term care, assisted living units, and life lease and rental apartment suites and Avon Mennonite Church welcomed its members to a new place of worship at the same location. Avon Mennonite and Greenwood operate in the same building with each entity having its own space and the two organizations sharing an auditorium, auxiliary kitchen, community room and other meeting rooms.
Discussions between TCMH and the Church Conference Mission Board to open a “Retarded Children’s Day Care Centre” (designation at that time) led to the completion of a group home for children with special needs in 1979. The new residence, located on the same site as the Nithview Seniors’ Village, was officially named Aldaview Home, in recognition of the pioneering work of Alvin and Ada Steinman whose son was supported by Aldaview for many years.
In 1984, Aldaview rented a house, located on Waterloo St. in New Hamburg, from the Lions’ Club and welcomed 6 new adult residents into that home. Further expansion, in 1990, saw tenants welcomed into the first Supported Independent Living (SIL) apartments and the division name changed to Aldaview Services.
In 1994, the TCMH Board received approval to change the children’s group home to an adult home, making the entire Aldaview Services operation a program for adults. Over the years, Aldaview has rented numerous buildings to expand its services to adults with developmental disabilities. In 2004, the New Hamburg Lions’ Club donated 140 Waterloo St. and a vacant lot to Aldaview. This donation was the catalyst to build the Riehl House on Hillcrest Ave. The Riehl House, specifically designed for 4 residents, was officially opened in 2005. A house, at 70 Ritz Ave. in New Hamburg, was purchased to provide additional accommodation for individuals. In December 2009, 332 Hamilton Rd. was leased and renovated to consolidate offices, life skills and day programming in one location, named “Connections”.
Although Tri-County Mennonite Homes is the legal entity under which all of the divisions have operated since 1968, it was not until 1989 that the TCMH Board chose to develop a corporate office and appoint a Chief Executive Officer to lead the entire organization. As the organization grew, the responsibilities of the TCMH corporate office expanded. Today, the TCMH corporate office provides support to its divisions in several areas including human resources, accounting, finance, development, capital expansion, information technology, and strategic planning.
In 2004, the TCMH Board and administration created a new logo for the organization and developed a new mission statement. The TCMH Mission Statement reads: “Rooted in faith, Tri-County Mennonite Homes provides leadership in service to seniors and developmentally disabled individuals by dedicated staff and volunteers”.
Each division has developed an operating philosophy statement that relates to the TCMH Mission Statement.
From 2002-2010, the TCMH Board worked toward building a new continuum of care home in Tavistock to replace the aging Bonnie Brae Health Care Centre. Much work was done including the purchase of land, design work, fundraising and multiple discussions and agreements with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. In this case, our hard work did not come to fruition and the land was sold in 2011.
In 2007, the TCMH Board approved a change to the TCMH and Divisional logos. The new logos better reflect the uniqueness of each division while clearly indicating their connectedness to TCMH and each other. In 2010, The TCMH Board approved plaques that clearly show the TCMH Mission Statement, the divisional operating philosophy statements and our Values statements. These plaques are placed at the entrances to our buildings for everyone to see.
With the assistance of a consultant, the Board completed a 5-year Strategic Plan in 2007, which outlined five major areas of direction for the organization:
- Build financial strength and stability
- Deliver a high standard of quality care
- Continued growth in a proactive and responsible mode
- Be an employer of choice
- Create sound internal synergies
In 2006, the MOHLTC divided the province into 14 Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) because, it was thought, people living locally were better able to plan, fund and integrate health services in their own communities than government officials in Toronto. By April 1, 2007, LHINs took on full responsibility for health services in their communities. TCMH relates to two LHINs with Greenwood Court in the South West LHIN and Nithview in the Waterloo/Wellington LHIN.
In 2010, TCMH began the planning process to rebuild the Nithview “B” beds through a MOHLTC program to upgrade all “B” & “C” beds in the province in the next 10 years. TCMH is hoping to be approved to rebuild its beds in the second phase of approvals when they are announced.
2005-2012 were marked as years of change in the seniors and developmental services sectors. In 2008, the MCSS passed the Services & Supports to Promote the Social Inclusion of Persons with Developmental Disabilities Act, 2008. The Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007 was implemented in 2010 and the Retirement Homes Act, 2010 was implemented in 2012. In addition, the MOHLTC substantially revised the Long-Term Care compliance program. The Government also began implementing in 2012 the Accessibilities for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005.
In March 2012, a new Strategic Plan was approved by the Board with three goal areas:
- Supporters donate time and money (through gifts or loans to the Note Program)
- Supporters are from the broader community beyond resident / client families and the constituent churches
- We are a centre of best practice excellence; where people come to learn from us.
- Our leaders are sought out by others in for profit and non-profit organizations for speaking engagements and committee membership / leadership.
- We are a growing organization. The number of seniors and clients we serve increases by expanding service at our existing locations or by acquiring more locations.
- Our Margin for Mission meets or exceeds benchmark levels.
- Our Quality Measures meet or exceed benchmark levels.
With an excellent Leadership group, a supportive Board, committed and skilled staff and volunteers, the future looks bright for TCMH and the people they serve and support.
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It is understood we hold a significant amount of personal information about our residents, clients, families and staff. We respect the resident, client, family and staff's right to privacy. Information is only shared with other Health Information Custodians for the purpose of providing appropriate care. No other private information will be shared without the explicit consent of the person. Any questions or concerns regarding the information we hold or how it is shared can be directed to John Ruetz, Chief Financial Officer/Privacy Officer or the Executive Director of each division.
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Click here for our Annual Report.