Annual Report for 2016

Message From Our Chair and Executive Director


In 2016 Shepherd home was honored to care for 18 women and men, ages 57-96, as we journeyed with them during their final days. As we complete our 11th year of caring for the terminally ill, we are grateful for the privilege of welcoming these courageous individuals to our doors and providing a home setting for them, their grieving families and friends, with no financial burden to them. Shepherd Home does not receive payment for our services and as a private home, we are not eligible for insurance reimbursement.

This past year we did not cover our operating expenses from income generated through private donations and fundraising. We are focused on ways to insure we are able to overcome another proposed deficit in 2017. Through our partnership with The Community Foundation we are pleased to have professional management of our endowment fund and to have access to a professional staff that will assist us in numerous strategies. We are collaborating with the foundation to help us reach donors who want information about long term giving and estate planning. We are also seeking the assistance of a grant writer to help us apply for grants available to those who provide end of life care.

The ongoing support of the Penfield Community and beyond has not only enabled us to provide the compassionate care for which we are known, but to continue to maintain and improve our home and property. We are grateful to John Betlem Heating and Cooling, Youngblood Disposal and Rothfuss Snowplowing for donating their vital services year round to our ministry!  We continue to extend our Memorial Walkway and more plantings have been added to our beautifully landscaped front, back and side yards. We are working with The Episcopal Church of the Incarnation to update the sign on Five Mile Line Rd. and to add one on Whalen Rd. A generous donor is underwriting the cost of the updated signs that will inform the community of our mission and our need for volunteers. We recently updated our phone and internet systems by switching carriers, which resulted in better service at a reduced monthly cost.

We made improvements to the interior of the home with the comfort of our residents and their visitors in mind. Flat screen TV’s were donated to our guest suite as well as to the lounge on the lower level where families can spend some time on their own.

Shepherd Home welcomed Jean Oswald R.N. as staff nurse, partnering with staff nurse, Ann Ras, L.P.N. Deborah Scibetta R.N. and Claudette Crowley R.N. joined our roster of per diem nurses. These dedicated nurses mentor our compassionate and hardworking volunteers who fill 56 shifts a week to care for our dying residents. Our staff continues to seek opportunities to educate the community about end of life care and to provide students with hands-on care learning opportunities. As in years past, several students from The Harley School hospice class and St. John Fisher School of Nursing have assisted our nurses and volunteers in caring for our residents. There were also students from the Nazareth College and Bryant and Stratton Occupational Therapy Departments who have spent part of their internship programs with us.

In another attempt to familiarize the community about our ministry to the dying, we held a Food Truck Rodeo and Open House in October. This event was well attended by many families in the area who enjoyed the delicious food, as well as the opportunity to tour our home and learn about the volunteer opportunities that we offer.

The Woodcliff Hotel and Spa was the site of The Black and White Ball, an annual fundraising event to which we all look forward. Supporters enjoyed a delicious dinner and had the opportunity to bid on exciting items and mingle with friends. In May, our property was ablaze with color as neighbors and friends stopped by to purchase beautiful annuals, perennials and hanging baskets from our Plant sale. July found many of our donors on the links at Penfield Country Club, enjoying competing with friends while supporting our ministry.

We closed the year with a ceremony of light and remembrance. On December 12 we held our sixth “Wings of Light” luminaria display. Individuals made donations for about 300 candles to honor their loved ones, living and deceased. Many families gathered on this cold winter night to enjoy the glow of the candles and to mingle with friends and SH volunteers.

As our 12th year of service to the community is under way, we look forward to caring for the individuals and the families who will be welcomed in 2017 with compassion and care. The continued support of the community is invaluable as we continue in our mission. “Rooted in faith and love, we provide compassionate care to members of our community with a terminal illness, in a way that cherishes the dignity of each individual and meets their physical, emotional and spiritual needs. We provide support to families and friends and foster community acceptance that dying is an integral part of living.”

         Betsy Inglis, Executive Director         Lizz Ortolani, Board Chair