As a Financial Life Planner who specializes in Philanthropy I was very impressed with the programs offered through the Hillel Lodge, especially with their emphasis on intergenerational sharing. Warmed my heart to hear Mitch tell me stories about how the Jewish Community honours their elders and keeps the younger students involved in their lives and so much more. This community is a shining example of how I’d like to see the rest of the world work in honouring, respecting and caring for others. – Betty-Anne
“Honour your father and your mother” is one of the Ten Commandments, which served as the primary inspiration for the building of Ottawa’s Jewish Home for the Aged, better known as Hillel Lodge.
“The Lodge” as it is affectionately known has grown from its original 29 bed facility on Wurtemburg street in the Sandy Hill area – built in 1965, to its current 121 bed facility now located on Nadolny Sachs Private in Ottawa’s west end (built in 2000).
Anyone who walks into a Long Term Care facility in Ontario to visit family and friends will tell you that we need to do more for our residents, for our families, for our parents. The Province plays a key role in funding Long Term Care facilities, with the balance being made up by residents’ fees (as set by the Province) and fundraising which includes gifts from caring individuals who want their gift to have an immediate impact and leave a legacy.
The residents of Hillel Lodge are fortunate that their Home is located on Ottawa’s Jewish Community Campus. Across the parking lot in one direction, they can enjoy the cultural events that are hosted by the Soloway JCC, and some residents will even take advantage of the saline pool. Actually, one of our amazing residents is one hundred years old and enjoys swimming a few mornings per week. Crossing the parking lot in another direction there is the Ottawa Jewish Community School which educates students from Kindergarten to grade 8. In addition to the students learning three languages (English, French and Hebrew) and strictly following the Province of Ontario’s Education Curriculum, they also invest time to visit the residents of the Lodge. It’s a win-win for the students and the residents.
Studies show that visiting people who are lonely and/or are living with dementia has a very positive impact for both the visitor and the person being visited. For our residents who do not receive regular visitors or whose family may live out of town, the visits from the young students always brightens up their day, and teaches the children to better understand and respect their elders.
What is interesting to observe when you work in a Long Term Care facility is that the building is someone’s Home. It’s a home with caring nurses, helpful maintenance staff, compassionate volunteers, and a team of others who want to insure that each and every day the quality of care and the quality of life are at the highest standards possible. It is what you would want for your parents if they required Long Term Care.
Long Term Care facilities, such as Hillel Lodge, need the community to be a partner in providing the level of care we all want for our loved ones when they need it the most – when they can no longer advocate for themselves. As the Executive Director of the Hillel Lodge LTC Foundation, I have the pleasure of seeing the immediate and long term impact that thoughtful people’s gifts have made in the lives of our residents. Additional nursing care, recreational activities, therapeutics, etc. that are above and beyond what the Province deems as sufficient and what we would all want for our parents.
The Bess and Moe Greenberg Hillel Lodge is a 121 bed facility that is open to people of all faiths, and celebrates the diversity of residents of Ontario in Ottawa’s only kosher long term care facility.
Executive Director of the Hillel Lodge LTC Foundation
Mitch Miller is the Executive Director of the Hillel Lodge LTC Foundation, and has been working to grow the Foundation to provide for the needs of Hillel Lodge’s residents of today and tomorrow.