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Good News This Week

May 22, 2020

Good News This WeekIt has been a great week at Westminster. We were honored to welcome Vice President Mike Pence and Governor Ron DeSantis, who visited Westminster Baldwin Park to deliver PPE for our team members. Meanwhile, our Foundation announced that residents have contributed more than $100,000 to support team members who have been impacted by COVID-19. Our communities have also been enjoying events, such as a butterfly release and a U.S. Air Force flyover.


Vice President Pence, Governor DeSantis Visit Westminster Baldwin Park To Deliver Personal Protective Equipment

May 20, 2020

Vice President Mike Pence  and Governor Ron DeSantis Deliver PPE to  Westminster Baldwin Park

ORLANDO, May 20 – Today, Westminster Baldwin Park was pleased to welcome to our community Vice President of the United States Mike Pence, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Administrator Seema Verma. Their visit was to deliver much-needed personal protective equipment (PPE) for the safety of our residents and team members, through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Westminster Baldwin Park, a neighborhood of Westminster Winter Park, is an active senior living community featuring independent living residences and a 40-bed Rapid Recovery Unit for skilled nursing.

“We are pleased that Vice President Pence, Governor DeSantis and Administrator Verma came to Westminster Baldwin Park to show their support for the residents we serve and for senior living communities,” said Westminster Winter Park Executive Director Tom Rockenbach.

From left, Shirley Schultz, Director of Nursing, and Fanley Romelus, Health Services Administrator, hold boxes of personal protective equipment signed by Vice President Pence, Governor DeSantis and Administrator Verma.

Pence, DeSantis and Verma delivered 10 boxes of gowns, gloves and surgical masks from the federal government to Westminster Baldwin Park. It was part of Verma’s initiative to send supplies, on behalf of CMS, to the more than 10,000 skilled nursing facilities throughout the United States.

All three signed several supply boxes for the community. Afterward, Pence commented, “I actually delivered these personally on Air Force Two today.”

Following the delivery, Pence and DeSantis greeted the nursing team members at Westminster Baldwin Park via cell phone to thank them for their hard work in serving older adults. “We are incredibly proud to be here and to meet you,” Pence said. “Here at Westminster Baldwin Park, you have done a phenomenal job of caring for our vulnerable seniors. On behalf of the president and the United States, thank you all very much and god bless you. Keep up the great work!”

From left, DeSantis and Pence speak with Schultz and Romelus about the challenges of providing a safe environment for residents and team members.

Although Pence, DeSantis and Verma weren’t able to come into Westminster Baldwin Park for safety, Pence and DeSantis gave a special greeting to the residents, who were lined up in their windows to watch.

DeSantis joined the call to offer his thanks. “The fact that you have gone so long without a single case shows that you have done a great job,” said DeSantis.

Westminster Baldwin Park is fortunate that none of our residents or team members have tested positive for COVID-19. We have put in place a variety of active measures to ensure the safety of everyone at our community.

We thank Vice President Pence, Gov. DeSantis, FEMA and the Trump administration for their support in making senior living communities like ours safer.

To learn how we’re navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, visit our COVID-19 resources page at www.WestminsterCommunitiesFL.org/coronavirus-news-and-resources

Verma, DeSantis and Pence wave to Westminster Baldwin Park residents at the end of their visit.


Join Us In A Shared Prayer Today at 2 p.m.

May 19, 2020

Join Us In A Shared Prayer Today

We are continuing to pray for the health of all of Westminster, and the world. As we move forward in this journey together, we are reminded that in the face of uncertainty, we must join together in our efforts and put our faith in God. We must look to the power of faith, hope, and love through all of this. Join us today, May 19, at 2 p.m., in this week's shared prayer, which was written by the Rev. Steven Bell, Chaplain at Westminster Palms, St. Petersburg.

Download the prayer now


‘Touched and Humbled By An Outpouring of Support’

May 18, 2020

Foundation Raises More Than $100,000 to Support Employees Affected by COVID-19

Westminster Retirement Communities Foundation Raises More Than $107,000 In Just Six Weeks to Support Team Members Affected by COVID-19

When it became apparent that the outbreak of the new coronavirus (COVID-19) throughout Florida was having an impact on the counties where our communities are located, Westminster Communities of Florida was faced with the challenge of how to support team members who may have been affected.

For someone who was facing a COVID-19 diagnosis for themselves or a family member, taking a substantial amount of time off could still be a financial hardship, even though the organization offers our team members a generous paid-leave program and health insurance benefits. We feel blessed that our communities have been so little affected, with only a single team member with a positive diagnosis out of 3,000. But some have been impacted disproportionately within their own families.

That’s why the Westminster Retirement Communities Foundation launched the Care In Crisis Campaign, an extension of the Foundation’s Mercy Fund, to raise funds to provide grants to supplement lost income for team members who are directly affected.

This generosity has made a world of difference! In just six weeks, the Care In Crisis Campaign has raised $107,000 and counting, with more than 300 gifts received, from residents and their families, team members, and members of our Board of Directors.

The Mercy Fund has been in existence for 20 years, and has always provided financial assistance to team members who have experienced a devastating occurrence in their lives that leaves them and their families in need. But the special Care In Crisis has seen an unprecedented outpouring of support.

Noreen Levitt, Vice President of Development for Westminster Communities of Florida, is sharing her gratitude to the amazing people who have helped the Care In Crisis Campaign. “We are grateful to the residents, families, staff and Board Members who have so generously contributed to the Care in Crisis campaign during these challenging times,” Levitt said.

Residents said their gifts were given in a variety of ways, but all motivated to support the team members who work so hard in their communities every day.

“I am from New York and after seeing the devastation in New York City, it made me appreciate all of the precautions being taken here at Westminster Palms,” said Valerie Webb, a resident at Westminster Palms and donor to the Care In Crisis Campaign. “I feel safe and secure here even during this pandemic. And the reason I feel safe is due to the efforts of the team members who continue to come to work every day during this crisis. This gift was a way to show my appreciation and gratitude for all of the team members and the sacrifices they make so that we can continue to live here comfortably.”

Another couple who made a gift, Millie and Mac Fryman, said they also wanted to show their well wishes to those who work in their community. “We hope they are well physically, spiritually, and economically, but if they are suffering, all we can do is to provide is financial support,” they said. “We are all in this unfamiliar season of our lives together. By extending helping hands through the Mercy Fund to those who have contributed so much to us, we honor the true meaning of community.”

Levitt said that these gifts have helped the Foundation exceed its goal for the Care In Crisis Campaign. “The benevolence of our donors has enabled the Foundation to very quickly exceed our fundraising goal of $100,000,” said Levitt. “We are both touched and humbled by the outpouring of support to this very worthy cause.”

Our team members appreciate this generosity, and the assurance of knowing that if the global pandemic affects them or their families, the Westminster family is here to support them.

To learn more about how you can contribute to the Mercy Fund and the Westminster Retirement Communities Foundation, visit our Foundation website.


Enjoy Our Good News From This Week

May 15, 2020

Good News This Week

This week started off on Mother's Day with our communities celebrating their mothers in fun and creative ways, from parades to virtual messages. We also saw the second half of National Nurses Week and how our Westminster team members are being thanked for their endless efforts to support our residents during the pandemic. Supporting local businesses is important while we are practicing social distancing, which is what one Westminster board member did by donating 400 pints of ice cream from a local creamery to team members. Find out more of the good news from Westminster this week below.


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