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Bishop Hills Has Higher Purpose
For residents of the 47-unit assisted care facility, there isn’t as much discussion of how the facility cares for them as how they care for people outside the facility. The residents’ service efforts keep them engaged with the local and international community.
“I really think that Bishop Hills is in a unique position with the programming that we have,” said Bodenner. “Our enrichment program seems to be what attracts people to our facility.”
This year, that enrichment program led to a partnership between International Aid, Cascade Engineering and The Carter Center to develop a next-generation water filtration system for use in impoverished countries.
The initiative came about from an earlier effort to support a nursing home in the
Bishop Hills partnered with a
In 2005, Bishop Hills reached out to David Manz, the Canadian scientist who invented the filter, with concerns about the weight of the concrete units. As is it turned out, he had designed a lighter weight plastic unit, but had not been able to take it to market.
Manz was introduced to local plastic manufacturer Cascade Engineering, who began collaborating on the new filter. International Aid, a mission-based logistical support organization, will drive distribution of the filters.
The initiative has attracted a steady stream of delegates to Bishop Hills from International Aid, Rotary International, Cascade Engineering, The Carter Center and others, including the reigning Miss
“As the project ages, we lose some of the founding members,” said Bodenner. “It’s important to keep them involved. They’re still very much a part of it, even though it’s taken on a life of its own.”
Bishop Hills was able to eventually establish relationships with two
The involvement has provided an increased level of engagement for residents with the news. For instance, Bodenner recalled, when the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln was deployed in support of the 2005 South Pacific tsunami, members spotted the ship they had supported in the news.
“If not for their involvement, that wouldn’t have meant anything to them,” said Bodenner. “Now, it was something important.”