Valley VNA Senior Care breaks ground on expansion project

The 114-year-old Neenah nonprofit will also renovate facilities

Valley VNA additionValley VNA Senior Care is adding space and renovating current areas, enhancing residents’ safety and quality of life.

“This project will allow us to make building renovations that ensure people with dementia or increased physical requirements will have better accommodations and enjoy their surroundings more,” said Valley VNA President and CEO Theresa Pichelmeyer.

As part of the project, Valley VNA will add 9,835-square-feet of new space, enhance the safety of common area spaces such as kitchens, dining rooms and lounges. Living quarters, outdoor courtyards and special amenities like the Namaste Room, Fitness Center and other spaces will be added or improved.

Caring for Generations: a campaign to ensure quality care for those we love raised funds for the capital project. The campaign was quietly launched in March 2020 prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic with the public phase of the campaign announced in spring 2021.

The project’s first phase includes building 11 rooms with common space for activities and a courtyard, said Tom Martin, president and partner with Community Living Services in Appleton, which is constructing the facility. While the addition is being built, Amber Court — the area closest to Lyon Drive — will be remodeled.

Once those two projects are complete, Martin said the rest of the building will be remodeled, which includes knocking out walls to create larger rooms, bathrooms, replacing kitchens, increasing natural light, reconfiguring common space for activities and removing barriers for visualization of residents.

Martin said the entire project should be complete by 2024.

During the project’s planning stages prior to March 2020, Valley VNA made the decision to enhance the facility’s air filtration systems to help eliminate the spread of airborne diseases, Pichelmeyer said. In light of the pandemic, installing the new system become more urgent since it combats and prevents virus outbreaks, she said.

“Our residents deserve the best — as do our staff. We want to be the place that people choose for safe care with the most talented caregivers,” Pichelmeyer said. “The past two years have certainly pushed us like we have never been pushed in over 100 years of service. Yet, it only strengthens our desire to keep offering outstanding care, to keep improving and keep going.”

Founded 114 years ago, Valley VNA has continually provided quality health care to the Menasha and Neenah communities. That long commitment led the City of Neenah to put a $4.4 million grant received through the American Rescue Plant Act towards the project, said Neenah Mayor Jane Lang.

“The funds are to be used for enhancing the health and safety of vulnerable communities. The Valley VNA project matches that description and even more with the addition of the new air filtration system, which will improve residents’ and employees’ health,” she said.

While the pandemic was tough on residents and employees, it only strengthened the organization’s resolve to provide outstanding care to residents, said Frank Kearny, Valley VNA Senior Care Board President and campaign chair.

“Valley VNA supports families who need a safe place for their loved ones to go when they require specialized care and a place to feel at home,” he said. “We support staying in your home as long as possible, but to have this amazing caregiving gem in our community when additional care is needed is a true gift. To be a part of the next chapter and help Valley VNA evolve to meet changing community needs is a privilege.”

About Valley VNA Senior Care
With over 114 years of service, Valley VNA Senior Care is the first assisted living provider in the Fox Cities — and the second in the state — to achieve the status of Accredited in the Diamond Program of the Wisconsin Assisted Living Association. Valley VNA Senior Care provides In-Home Care, Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Care, and collaborates with many community partners to provide essential community services. Learn more and donate to the capital campaign at valleyvna.org.