May 2019
Please Welcome Our Newest Members

Seva House Lakewood, CO
The Lily House Provincetown, MA
Register Today for the Executive Directors Boot Camp & 2019 Omega Home Network Conference

Late Registration Begins June 3
Start the conference off with the Executive Directors Boot Camp, a multi-session program, open to Associate and Home Members. Operational Leaders will receive intensive training in the model and an opportunity to gain experienced-based knowledge, ask thought-provoking questions, and grow their leadership role in enhancing the long-term sustainability of their home. Attendees will have full access to expert speakers for questions and mentoring.
Sustainability: A Little Compassion
Goes a Long Way
Compassion is, of course, a very important human quality. The recent interest in positive psychology has resulted in the development of several programs which seek to develop and expand this all-important quality. CBCT® or Cognitively-based Compassion Training is one of these programs.

“CBCT® is a system of contemplative exercises designed to strengthen and sustain compassion. Practices include training in attentional stability and increased emotional awareness, as well as targeted analytical reflections to understand better one’s relationship with self and others. The reflective exercises seek critical insights into the way one’s mindsets and attitudes can be shifted to support personal resiliency, to foster an inclusive and more accurate understanding of others, and ultimately to intensify altruistic motivation. With practice, informed compassion can become a spontaneous response that permeates one’s life.”

CBCT® was developed at Emory University’s Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion Based Ethics more than 10 years ago. It is taught all over the world to many groups of people. CBCT® has been subjected to extensive empiric analysis to evaluate its effectiveness and it appears that some form of compassion training may be helpful to those of us who work in end-of-life care. The ability to recognize and appreciate the emotions of guests and families and carry out compassion translates to better end-of-life experiences in our homes.

Also, in our line work, a lack of self-compassion and high rates of burnout and stress are common. Not only do many CBCT® participants notice an increase in their feelings of altruism, but they also experience an improvement in their overall health and well-being, resiliency, and empathic accuracy. Through compassion training, there seems to be a greater sense of self-compassion and decreased feelings of burnout and stress.

Co-Founder & Vice President, Compassion House for Living & Dying - Atlanta, GA

Don't miss Tom's session "Exploring Our Compassionate Hearts" at the 2019 Omega Home Network Conference. He will talk more about the potential benefits of becoming more mindful of our compassionate hearts and lead us in a few simple exercises to help us take better care of ourselves and to be of greater service to our guests and families.
Spotlight: Caring House
In three and a quarter years we’ve welcomed more than 170 residents and families to the loving five-bedroom home we call Caring House . We're honored to have teamed with these residents and families (and their selected hospices) to bring peace, comfort, support and dignity.

We can never thank enough the Omega Home Network and its members for helping us learn and succeed. Super special thanks go to the team at Francis House (Syracuse, NY) who have been our advisors since we first started dreaming about this work many years ago.

We’ve faced many challenges and learned much. In general, our community has welcomed us. The biggest continuing neighborhood issue is parking.

We continue to develop and adjust our relationships with the hospitals and hospices in our area (to date 16 hospices have served in our home).

Our average length of stay is 13 days. Painfully, at times our house has been empty. Thankfully empty days are becoming rare and our occupancy rate is getting progressively stronger.

We have a solid core group of paid caregiver staff. We struggle, however, to find additional capable, caring and reliable individuals to join that group. Our core volunteer team (about 25 volunteers) benefits from the wisdom of the veterans and the talents and energy of the new members.

Our revenues come roughly 50-50 from donations and from residents/family payments. We ask residents/families to cover the costs of care for the resident. For those who are unable to do that, we use a sliding scale approach where they contribute to the costs of care to the best of their ability. So far, 57% or our residents/families have used the sliding scale.

Our dreams for the future include creating a second home in our area. At the same time, we are pleased to continue the Omega Home Network spirit of helping others as they work to create their own homes.

Volunteer & President, Caring House - Torrance, CA
Focus: The Story Behind Our Conference Theme
A great event begins with a great theme – a common rallying cry that sets the tone and connects attendees toward a common purpose.

This year’s Omega Home Network National Conference theme came to conference organizers from ABODE Contemplative Care for the Dying as we were reminiscing about Anna, one of our Guests. We recalled how, as we sat with her as she was dying, her breathing changed. We were surprised when she opened her eyes. “It’s so beautiful,” Anna said. “The colors. Can you hear them? Can you hear the flowers?” 

She was experiencing pure awe. So were we.

Can You Hear the Flowers? Planting the Seeds of Awareness seemed like a natural theme for this year’s conference, as all of us put one foot in front of another to create, build, maintain and spread the word about community end-of-life homes across the country. We’re happy to honor Anna as we plan – and actively participate in – this year’s conference.
Coincidently – or, perhaps it was fate – we knew of a beautiful series of birth month flowers created by artist Nikki May. We reached out to see if she’d be so kind as to allow us to incorporate her art into our conference graphics – and Nikki generously agreed. So now, as you view the conference web page , Omega Home Network Facebook and ABODE Facebook and Instagram , you’ll see her art featured throughout. 

“As an artist, I enjoy adding beauty to the world,” Nikki says. “I’m thrilled to see that my birth month flowers are setting the tone for a conference that celebrates the beautiful end-of-life work that you all do.”

Nikki’s generosity extends even further. Visit her online store – where you’ll find her flowers and other art on everything from mugs and totes to pouches and greeting cards. Use OMEGA as the code when you check out and Nikki will donate a portion of her sales to support our conference.

2019 Omega Home Network Conference Planner, thorsby + associates - San Antonio, TX
Session Peek: Understanding the Impact of Military Culture on the Veteran's
End-of-Life Journey
Those who have served in our armed forces face unique challenges at the end of life – and significant struggles may arise as they enter their final days. Numerous ethical and cultural considerations should be observed when caring for veterans. It is imperative that caregivers take time to explore a veterans’ military history to understand how historical elements may impact their end of life journey. Various elements that contribute to a veteran’s experience may include wartime era cultural influences, military class systems, mission focus, historical racial elements, and gender identity and orientation. Additionally, understanding the potential impact of military culture on a veteran’s mental health empowers the caregiver to adapt interventions that tap into the strengths and challenges that may result from military service. Join "Understanding the Impact of Military Culture on the Veteran's End-of-Life Journey" at the 2019 Omega Home Network Conference for a passionate and thought-provoking discussion that will explore how caregivers can enhance care for veterans during their end of life journey.

Clinical Assistant Professor, Our Lady of the Lake University - San Antonio, TX
Resource: Things That Come in Handy
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Omega Home Network Members
Open Homes

Torrance, CA

Santa Barbara, CA

Visalia, CA

Iowa City, IA

Louisville, KY

Auburn, MI

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Charlotte, MI

Lansing, MI

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In Development

The Aurora House
Anchorage, AK

Corona, CA

Thousand Oaks, CA

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San Fernando Valley, CA

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Aurora, CO

Seva House
Lakewood, CO

Lazarus Gate
Lafayette, CO

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The Lily House
Provincetown, MA

Flint, MI

Joplin, MO

Springfield, MO

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Scott's House
Santa Fe, NM

Casa Cielo
Santa Fe, NM

Accountable Health Community, Inc.
Chloe Emerling Luther
Orchard Park, NY

Darah House
Seaford, NY

Yellow Springs, OH

Grace House Akron
Akron, OH

Bartlesville, OK

Oklahoma City, OK

Oklahoma City, OK

The Heavenly Angels House
Grove, OK

Pittsburgh, PA

Villa Teresa
Rockwall, TX


Madison, WI