It Takes a Village 


The Masonic Villages proudly provided charitable care and services worth approximately $45.5 million across the state in 2018. As a not-for-profit organization, and as part of our Mission of Love, Masonic Villages extends services to surrounding communities, filling the needs of individuals of all ages.

2018 Community Report

Efforts focused on enhancing local businesses and nonprofits, supporting economic development, enriching students, engaging children, assisting those in need and encouraging residents’ participation.

Partnerships

Masonic Villages works with other organizations to help fulfill needs in the community, some of which also benefit our residents. We partner with local schools for mutually beneficial intergenerational programming among senior residents and youth at all our locations.

We open our facilities for use by other organizations to assist in fulfilling their missions, whether it’s a charity run, conference or educational opportunity. AARP held Driver Safety Courses in Sewickley and Lafayette Hill, which were open to the local community. Masonic Village at Lafayette hosted a blood drive and free health fair for the public. Elizabethtown hosted several 5K runs and walks on its 1,400-acre campus.

In partnership with Elizabethtown Community Housing and Outreach Services (ECHOS), which runs a winter shelter at St. Paul’s Methodist Church for those with emergency living needs, Masonic Village’s environmental services department washed 2,465 pounds of sheets, blankets, comforters and towels free of charge, donating staff time valued at approximately $1,429.

The Greater Elizabethtown Area Recreation & Community Services (GEARS) hosts fitness classes at our Elizabethtown campus, and 2,703 people from the local community participated in 2018. Masonic Village donated approximately $39,065 worth of space for these programs. There is no charge to GEARS, thanks to a mutually beneficial agreement.

Masonic Village ’s food services departments in Lafayette Hill and Elizabethtown hosted interns from Job Corps and Lancaster Career and Technology Center, respectively, and provided feedback on the programs so students and instructors are aware of industry standards that have changed to ensure they’re producing a qualified workforce.

In a partnership with Elizabethtown College that benefits students and Masonic Village at Elizabethtown residents, biology students have the opportunity to earn  a 40-hour CNA certification, which includes classwork, direct interaction with residents and a competency test. Masonic Village at Sewickley established a partnership with Beaver County Career and Technology Center (BCCTC) in 2018, which allowed 30 students to gain nurse aide clinical experience. Following the completion of their certification, 14 accepted employment offers at Masonic Village.

Nursing students talk with a resident

BCCTC nurse aide students visit with Masonic Village at Sewickley residents

“Students who have completed a nurse aide course within a clinical setting are found to be more successful and higher quality registered nurses in the future. They are achieving professional critical thinking skills, working alongside professionals in the industry and enhancing their education. In addition, these partnerships also promote professional networking and the development of relationships with the residents.” 

Theresa Cairns, BCCTC health occupations program instructor

Business & Economic Support

As a not-for-profit organization, Masonic Villages is not required to pay real estate taxes; however, we value municipalities’ services and understand their plights, as costs impact local taxes. Through Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) agreements signed in Dallas, Elizabethtown, Lafayette Hill and Sewickley, we paid $2,157,932 to local boroughs, townships, counties and school districts in 2018.

Supporting the local economy is also a priority. Through contracts with 398 businesses in the Dallas, Elizabethtown, Lafayette Hill and Sewickley areas, Masonic Villages generated expenditures of $5,866,924.

Implementing eco-friendly operations and initiatives is an important investment in our community’s and planet’s future, whether it’s restoring a portion of the Conoy Creek, expanding our solar power plant or protecting soil and water resources while operating a beef cattle and farm enterprise. For the past 12 years, Masonic Villages has been implementing a comprehensive sustainability plan. This includes renewable energy projects, energy auditing and more than 80 individual efficiency projects in the areas of water efficiency, sustainable sites (biomimicry), materials (recycling) and indoor environmental quality.

Penn State students explore Conoy Creek at Masonic Village

Penn State Harrisburg students collect samples from the Conoy Creek at Masonic Village at Elizabethtown

“Local partnerships like the one we have with Masonic Village are essential for the introductory geology class field trips I teach each semester. Most of our students are from the central Pennsylvania region, and we want them learning about the river systems and geology in the same region where they will be working and living. The Conoy Creek stream is an excellent example of a flood plain reconnection stream that flows through both agricultural and industrial areas. Being just over a decade old, the site at Masonic Village allows us to compare water quality and ecosystem health with relatively new restoration projects and ones that are several decades old. This site is a great example of a ‘living lab’ that I can show my students and undergraduate research assistants when discussing how a stream can be restored to a more ‘natural’ state.”

Dr. Jennifer Slik, Geoscience, Civil Engineering Program – School of Science, Engineering, and Technology, Penn State Harrisburg

Donations

Elizabethtown Area Education Foundation check presentation

Cindy Phillips, executive director, Masonic Village at Elizabethtown (left), presents Michelle Balliet, Elizabethtown Area School District superintendent (second from left), with a check for the Elizabethtown Area Education Foundation, alongside Masonic Village residents

Masonic Villages seeks ways to support other charitable groups whenever possible. We contributed more than $37,600 to fire and EMS companies, three libraries and other causes. Other efforts include:

  • We donated clothing and books to Salvation Army, Goodwill, libraries and other local thrift stores. In Warminster, staff organized a hurricane clothing drive for the Salvation Army, with residents, family members and staff contributing items.
  • The Masonic Village Farm Market donated more than 50 pounds of food weekly to the Elizabethtown and East Donegal-Conoy Food Banks and more than $1,000 in gift certificates to local civic, scout and religious groups for fundraisers. The market also donated 400 bushels to local food banks and Lancaster County Meals on Wheels.
  • At Masonic Villages’ Elizabethtown and Sewickley locations, we awarded $20,000 in scholarships to graduating seniors who volunteered at least 100 hours with us during their high school years.
  • We contributed $30,000 to the Elizabethtown Area Education Foundation to help generate support for the foundation’s grant program to enhance learning experiences in the classroom and beyond.
  • Masonic Village Hospice raised more than $7,300 for the 2018 Relay for Life of Lancaster, benefiting the American Cancer Society.

Connor Scanlon’s grandmother resides at the Masonic Village. It was during his visits with her that he became interested in volunteering, which eventually led him down his future career path in the medical field. The sophomore is studying molecular biology, neuroscience and chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh, with plans to pursue a career in neuroscience research at the neuron level.

“I thought volunteering would be a good experience to help out, improve quality of life for patients and visit my grandmother. I helped coordinate activities and transport residents. I learned a lot about dealing with people, and I feel I became a nicer person after volunteering. I really enjoyed seeing people happy and making their day. I think it’s really important for everyone to gain experience helping people without a monetary gain.”

Masonic Village check presentationIn lieu of printing Masonic Villages’ Community Reports in 2018, we decided to “go green” and produce only a digital report. We donated the money budgeted for this project to charitable organizations serving local seniors. Donations totaling $15,300 were made to Weinberg Regional Food Bank in Luzerne County (shown left), Northwest EMS and the Community Cupboard in Lancaster County, The Christmas Gala in Bucks County, Colonial Neighborhood Council in Montgomery County and Allegheny County’s OPTIONS program.

Educational Opportunities

Prism nursing students who worked with Masonic Village at Warminster

Students from Prism Career Institute complete their clinicals at Masonic Village at Warminster

Education is the basis for success, and Masonic Villages is proud to help young students build strong foundations for  bright futures. Working with local schools and universities, we welcome students seeking internships and job shadow experiences.

In 2018, across the state, interns joined us in the public relations, marketing and maintenance departments and at the Masonic Village Farm. In clinical settings, including the Adult Daily Living Center and wellness center, and in the nutrition services, nursing, pharmacy, physical and occupational therapy, music therapy, food services, social services, hospice, environmental services and health care administration departments, staff supervised 270 students for more than 11,589 hours – time valued at approximately $95,729*.

Included in the values above, students from University of Sciences, Duquense University, Drexel University, La Salle University, Penn State University, Penn State Harrisburg, Penn State YorkLancaster County Career & Technology Center, Prism Career Institute, Successful Aging Career Institute, Beaver County Career and Technology Center, Pittsburgh Technical College and Community College of Beaver County completed public health clinicals with Masonic Villages. For several years, Masonic Village at Elizabethtown has teamed up with Lancaster-Lebanon Intermediate Unit 13 to offer students internships and real world job experiences. We hosted 34 students in 2018.

Four Plymouth Whitemarsh High School Life Skills students worked with Masonic Village at Lafayette Hill’s food services and environmental services departments at the start of the fall school semester.

*Based on national community benefits reporting standards, 20% of staff time overseeing students in a clinical setting may be quantified as a community benefit.

Masonic Village at Dallas intern Emilee Krasson“I had completed an internship for health care management but didn’t have any marketing experience. The career center suggested Masonic Village, which offered experiences in both. I worked closely with Joy [Hubshman, director of sales and marketing] and Noah [Davis, executive director]. I learned how to have more confidence in myself to express ideas and make important decisions and enhanced my people skills. Joy’s bright personality and Noah’s helpfulness made the experience 10 times better. Their teamwork is great, and I enjoyed interacting with the residents.”

Emilee Krasson, a 2018 Misericordia University graduate, who interned with Masonic Village at Dallas last spring. She majored in health care management with a minor in marketing.

Sabria Bourquin, intern with Masonic Village at Sewickley“My experience as an Administrator in Training at Masonic Village at Sewickley has been invaluable and exceeded all of my expectations. I had the opportunity to work with all departments to see what it is like to provide care for the residents in all aspects of living. I was able to further my skills and knowledge in administrative tasks and develop new ways to solve problems by working on projects that were assigned to me. I was able to step out of my comfort zone by taking on tasks and building new skills that will be beneficial in my career. The most enjoyable part of completing my internship at Masonic Village was being able to learn the many dynamics of the health care field while working with various staff members to provide quality care and making the residents happy and comfortable with the environment they live in.” 

Sabria Bourquin, a Kent State University student majoring in human development & family studies with a concentration in nursing home administration, who interned with Masonic Village at Sewickley

For the fourth year, Masonic Village collaborated with the physical therapy department at Misericordia University on a Balance & Fall Prevention Program. The residents work one-on-one with graduate students each week, completing an initial assessment, exercising weekly and then completing a final assessment at the end of the program. Students gain real world experience, and residents have seen the health benefits in balance and strength, as well as reducing their fear of falling.

Outreach

Residents of the Masonic Children's Home on the first day of school

Residents of the Masonic Children’s Home on the first day of school

Community members at any stage of life can find assistance at Masonic Villages. Last year, in Elizabethtown, an average of 12 individuals, including community members and Masonic Village residents, participated in the monthly Dementia Caregiver Support & Education Group. An average of 11 individuals per month attended meetings of the Bereavement Support Group at Masonic Village. Meetings are also held in Mount Joy and Millersville, where four to six individuals attended monthly in 2018. Masonic Village contributed approximately $4,620, including 103 hours of staff time, materials and classroom space, toward these support groups.

Masonic Villages’ Outreach Program runs a Medical Loan Closet which provides equipment to families on a short-term basis free of charge. We supplied wheelchairs, walkers, canes, shower chairs and other equipment to 10 individuals in 2018.

Funded through generous contributions, the Masonic Children’s Home in Elizabethtown does not charge individuals, organizations, or the state or federal government for its services. It provides a home for up to 40 youth who are being raised by aging grandparents or who come from various social or economic environments which do not provide necessary security and support. Children do not need to have a Masonic affiliation in their family to be eligible for services. In 2018, the Elizabethtown Area School District received $376,627 through reciprocity agreements with the school districts from which the children come to us.

At the Masonic Village Child Care Center, managed by Bright Horizons for the first half of 2018, tuition rates did not cover the cost of operations. In order to provide the community with a high quality child care option, Masonic Village subsidized $135,123 in costs. In June 2018, U-GRO Learning Centres took over management of the child care center. (The majority of the subsidy was incurred before the current management model with U-GRO was implemented on June 7, 2018.)

In 2018, $90,605 in kindergarten and pre-kindergarten scholarships were awarded to income-qualified families, thanks to Masonic Villages’ participation in the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program and donations from local businesses. The scholarships supported families attending the Masonic Village Child Care Centers in Elizabethtown and Sewickley and other local child care providers.

Resident Contributions

Bleiler Caring Cottage residents volunteer to clean up Amtrak station

Residents of the Bleiler Caring Cottage volunteered to clean up the Elizabethtown Amtrak station

Many Masonic Villages residents are active in the community. Last year, residents contributed to service projects that benefited children, students, older adults, emergency service providers, the homeless, those with food insecurities and international humanitarian efforts.

Residents of the Bleiler Caring Cottage participated in bi-monthly community services projects, including cleaning up the Elizabethtown Amtrak station, collecting food donations for Conestoga Valley Christian Community Services and donating to Toys for Tots.

The Woodworking Club at the Masonic Village at Sewickley crafted wooden toys and raised $750 for the Shriners Hospitals for Children. Residents in Sewickley also contributed 576 hours of their time sorting and folding clothing donations at World Vision. Masonic Village at Dallas residents participated in an Adopt a Road project to help clean up nearby Country Club Road and collected and donated toys for the Shriners Hospitals for Children. In Lafayette Hill, residents donated puzzles and books to Fox Chase Cancer Center and clothing and other miscellaneous items to Whosoever Gospel Mission, the Salvation Army and the National Federation for the Blind

Residents in Elizabethtown, Lafayette Hill and Sewickley knit blankets, robes and hats for Project Linus, a national nonprofit organization which donates blankets to children in hospitals, including the Shriners Hospitals for Children; shelters; social service agencies; or anywhere a need arises. They knitted and donated more than 200 blankets in 2018.

Through the Congregation of Sell Chapel’s Community Outreach ministry in Elizabethtown, members donated $44,000 in offerings toward Elizabethtown Community Housing and Outreach Services (ECHOS), The Children’s Playroom of LancasterClare House, Hope Within, Communities That Care and the CROP Walk, which benefits the Community Cupboard of Elizabethtown. Members of the congregation volunteered with ECHOS and the winter shelter, the Children’s Playroom and the Elizabethtown Area School District’s Buddy Program.

To assist with the growing demands for the services of the United Churches of Elizabethtown, which oversees a child care center, Meals on Wheels, Community Cupboard of Elizabethtown, a clothing bank, family support and more, the Congregation of Sell Chapel donated $15,000 to the community organization and its new home, the Community Place on Washington.

Congregation of Sell Chapel check presentation to Elizabethtown Ministerium“Sell Chapel’s donation sends a clear signal to the community and other congregations that this is an important project, and Masonic Village residents are behind it! The need for support systems in our town to help people get back on their feet is so crucial, especially for younger mothers and families. Sell Chapel is helping to pave the way for long-term assistance options.”

Pastor Doug Lamb, president of the Elizabethtown Ministerium (shown far left with Preston Van Deursen, director of spiritual care, and members of the Congregation of Sell Chapel)

Cocalico High School senior Lydia Althouse put in more than 80 hours making 1,000 chew toys for homeless dogs to earn her Gold Award, Girl Scout’s highest honor. She collected T-shirts and old fabric and worked with Masonic Village at Elizabethtown residents, as well as other scouting groups, to make the toys, which were sent to Paws N’Time Canine Rescue in Lancaster and other animal welfare groups across the country. The residents, who reside in the same neighborhood of the Masonic Health Care Center, continue to collect fabric and meet monthly to make the toys.

Watch Lydia receive her Gold Award during a ceremony at Masonic Village.

Community Benefits Financial Summary

Fulfilling our commitment to serve others regardless of their financial means, in 2018, Masonic Villages provided $45.5 million in charitable care and services across the state, thanks to those who believe in and have donated toward our mission.

Masonic Villages also supports the community where and when a need arises. As detailed above, between awarding scholarships to teen volunteers, donating to local emergency service providers, hosting interns and inviting community groups to use our facilities free of charge, we gave back more than $701,348 in support and services to the Dallas, Elizabethtown, Lafayette Hill, Sewickley and Warminster communities in 2018.