Sidney’s Rest Haven Lodge is merging with the Broadmead Care Society and it becomes official on April 1.
In an announcement March 29, Broadmead stated that the 73 residential complex care beds for seniors in Sidney will continue to operate under the same name but will be owned and operated by their Society.
Rest Haven Lodge was facing financial and operational challenges, says Broadmead CEO David Cheperdak, when discussions about a potential merger first came up a couple years ago. Those talks resumed officially in 2017 and negotiations took place over nearly 10 months.
Cheperdak said Rest Haven Lodge was financially challenged at that time, but Broadmead stepped in to offer its administrative team over the last four or five months. He said he’s confident that they’ve gotten Rest Haven’s operations back in the black.
“It’s a challenging service to provide,” he said, noting that both Broadmead and Rest Haven are non-profit organizations that rely not only on donations, but funding from Island Health and other partners, to operate.
Cheperdak said Rest Haven had a couple administrative positions vacant for an extended period, which also created some operational issues. The merger means Broadmead’s administrative team will take over, eliminating similar positions at Rest Haven Lodge. He added, however, that apart from one employee finding work with a different organization, all staff at Rest Haven — around 100 people — have been retained.
“We have become more and more efficient in our management,” Cheperdak noted. “We’re able to provide those services to the front line, to be able to provide the best care possible.”
With the merger, employees and residents can expect to see some changes, Cheperdak said. He said Broadmead recently received approval from Island Health for $250,000 in capital improvements. Those include upgrades to Rest Haven’s elevator system and elsewhere in the building.
“We’ve had strong support from Island Health. We’ve also had additional approved for increasing funding for staffing.”
Cheperdak said that approval is for $400,000 that Broadmead will put into additional hours of care delivery to residents at Rest Haven.
“Rest Haven Lodge has a wonderful legacy of providing care services,” he continued. “Broadmead Care is building on that legacy.”
Broadmead Care Society already operates the 229-bed residential care facility Veterans Memorial Lodge at Broadmead, the Veterans Health Care Centre and 40-bed Nigel Program for Adults with Disabilities. They also absorbed Beckley Farm Lodge last year, a 65-bed facility in James Bay. They are a registered Canadian charity and primarily provide residential care and day programs for veterans in Vancouver Island. They work with Island Health, Veterans Affairs Canada and BC Housing to help fund their operations and programs.
The release noted that Broadmead has grown around 35 per cent in four years and now employs about 700 people and provides 408 care beds.
Rest Haven Lodge opened in Sidney in 1982, under the auspices of Seventh-Day Adventist Church. According to the Canadian Adventist Long Term Care Association, the history goes back even further to the Rest Haven Hospital in Sidney that operated between 1921 to 1978.
The Rest Haven Foundation, formed in September of 2014 to raise money for the Lodge, has announced it will dissolve effective April 1.
“With the pending merger … the fundraising efforts of the Rest Haven Foundation are no longer needed. Broadmead will be responsible for all future fundraising initiatives for Rest Haven Lodge,” stated a notice on the Foundation’s website, signed by the board members.
The Foundation — which until recently ran the Sidney Bed Races event — contributed more than $80,000 to Rest Haven Lodge. Cheperdak said Broadmead has an employee looking at the activities of the Foundation, and into whether their events might be saved.