Caring for People Who Care for Seniors

Caring for seniors truly takes a village. Nearly 300 full- and part-time caregivers and support staff, both on the front lines and behind the scenes, ensure that residents receive the highest quality care. Nurses and CNAs make up a large portion of Immanuel Lutheran Communities’ caregiving team, but chefs, wait staff, accountants, housekeepers, maintenance technicians, recreation coordinators, fitness instructors, and many other professionals all have significant roles to play.

Immanuel staff members care deeply for residents, and every day demonstrate their commitment to the highest quality of service. In recognition of that devotion, three funds were created to support professional development and provide help for them in times of crisis.

The Employee Education Fund provides financial assistance to those pursuing an accredited program of study who maintain satisfactory level of academic performance and have worked at Immanuel Lutheran Communities for a required period of time. These funds provide routes to professional advancement for individuals who otherwise cannot afford the costs of an education, while simultaneously enhancing their abilities to improve the lives of older adults.

When you give to the Employee Education Fund, you support the personal and professional development of caring, compassionate people who work every day to make the lives of seniors brighter.

Education funds have made it possible for Certified Nurse Assistants (CNAs) to advance in their profession to Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) and for LPNs to become Registered Nurses (RNs). Other staff members have applied their scholarships to achieve associate’s and bachelor’s degrees, and still others to develop professionally through the pursuit of graduate courses of study.

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Immanuel Lutheran Communities nurses’ aides provide care and companionship for residents. Due to regulations, aides cannot carry a full workload until they have become certified via an accredited course. Immanuel provides a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) course for those seeking a career providing care and companionship to seniors. A full-time Certified Nursing Assistant earns about $3,000 more per year than a full-time caregiver without the certification. Unlike other CNA courses in the Flathead Valley, Immanuel attendees are paid at the trainee rate while they are enrolled in class and every individual who passes the certification exam is offered a position of employment.

Given the costs of sustaining this program, there is a limit to the number of certifications slots. A gift to this fund makes it possible for more people—young and old—to obtain meaningful work at a living wage.

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Occasionally everyone falls on hard times. The Foundation is committed to providing safety-net funds to employees who have a serious health event, a home or auto emergency, or other unforeseen crisis. The Employee Crisis Fund, overseen by the Pastoral Care Team, provides emergency grants to staff members in need. A gift to this fund ensures that those who have devoted their lives to taking care of older adults are also cared for in their times of crisis.

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At the Immanuel Foundation, we believe that every senior living in Montana has the right to a safe, secure home in an engaging and supportive community. We work every day to make that vision a reality and your financial support is crucial.

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