The Mercy Medical Center Foundation is pleased to announce a $2 million lead gift from the Chris and Suzy DeWolf family of Cedar Rapids for the creation and formation of the Chris and Suzy DeWolf Family Innovation Center for Aging & Dementia.
The DeWolf Family Innovation Center will be located in northeast Cedar Rapids as part of HallMar Village, an advanced, integrated senior living community that is being developed by Mercy in partnership with Presbyterian Homes & Services.
The DeWolfs said they were compelled to support the Innovation Center because of its potential to transform the lives of individuals living with dementia. The Innovation Center will be a hub of research, training and education, where best practices in aging and dementia are discovered, tested and evaluated to help those living with chronic conditions, including dementia, live their lives with purpose.
“We see this gift as an extension of our responsibility to the Cedar Rapids community,” said Chris DeWolf, president and CEO of Lil’ Drug Store Products, Inc. and chairman of Mercy Medical Center’s Board of Trustees. “We believe the Innovation Center for Aging & Dementia has the potential to change the trajectory of dementia research and, thus, the way people with dementia live, and that’s something we’re pleased to support and nurture. We want to be part of the contemporary solution in addressing this growing public health crisis.”
“Our family was blessed to be part of the fundraising, design and construction of the Dennis & Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy in 2007, which honored my parents and is a lasting legacy to their foresight and generosity,” said Suzy DeWolf. “We have witnessed the influence that the Hospice House has had on so many people’s lives over the years, and we are hopeful that the Innovation Center for Aging & Dementia will have an equally transformative effect.”
The Chris and Suzy DeWolf Family Innovation Center for Aging & Dementia at HallMar Village will house valuable services to support people living with dementia, care partners and families, including:
- Mercy’s Memory Clinic – a source of medical evaluation and assessment for people seeking to determine whether their changing memory is a normal part of aging or a form of dementia – which is currently housed at Mercy Medical Center
- A geriatric medical clinic for drop-in, same-day acute visits, as well as multi-specialty services, including counseling and telehealth
- An extension of the Family Caregivers Center of Mercy that will offer individual caregiver visits, support groups, educational events, art, music and chair yoga
- An adult day center tailored for early-stage dementia and inclusiveness for all
- The Research & Training Institute, which will offer training to staff, family care partners and other care centers in the community
- A living classroom in which students will learn from staff, residents and care partners, as well as instructors, to become personal support workers using HallMar Village as a training site
Construction of HallMar Village is anticipated to begin in spring 2021. Because the Innovation Center will be located within an existing building, Mercy expects it to be open and operational by late fall 2021.