The idea for Breath of Life was conceived and initiated by Robert Schricker, our first Executive Director and expanded by our current Executive Director, Paul Welch. Their goal was to reach out to the many caregivers in our community and offer them some relief from the 24/7 all-consuming task of caring for a vulnerable or dependent adult. Whether it is a spouse caring for their dependent spouse, adult children caring for parents or grandparents or friends/neighbors trying to care for an adult that is like family to them, the demands of providing care for a dependent adult is comparable to a full-time job in time and commitment.
We hope to fulfill the goal of providing respite for area caregivers, which in turn positively impacts their health, keeping them from burning out as caregivers. Breath of Life was not formed to just take the adults “off the hands” of the caregivers, but to positively impact the lives of these adults. We also strive to keep the family together for as long as possible. The family is an integral part of each person's life and is the underlying fabric that holds a community together. By giving care to those dependent adults who are often viewed by society as having little if any contributing value, we hope we can help change that perception. We offer an alternative view. It is that we still have much to learn from these senior, experienced family and community members. Keeping them in their homes longer, keeping them mentally & physically stimulated, provides a positive impact on multiple generations as the participants stay engaged in their families.
Our participants currently range in age from 60's to 90's and have varying levels of physical and/or mental/memory disabilities. These are people who cannot be left by themselves safely. Our organization provides physical, mental and spiritual stimulation. We provide a variety of activities, companionship, socialization, nutritious meals, baths and limited health monitoring.
We have a full calendar of activities each month and many are conducted by volunteers. Almost everyone loves to sing, and we have a variety of musical groups that engage our participants in sing-alongs. We tailor the activities to the interest of the participants. For a sample of what we do, just check out the pictures in our Media Gallery. One of our volunteers has even “tailor-made” games that provide exercise while adapting to physical and mental limitations of those who participate.
Nothing brings more joy to the staff of Breath of Life than seeing the smiles and the genuine love that goes on in these participants and their families. That is truly a blessing and why Breath of Life was created – to bring joy. Come visit! You will leave with a heart warmed by the experience. Then we will have made you smile as well.
If you, or someone you know who would benefit from our services, please contact us at 218-822-3296. We would be happy to provide you with information, a tour or even a day for your loved one to "try us out."