April 13, 2020
BELLEVUE, WA–Aegis Living, a national leader in assisted living and memory care, and the Clark Family Foundation, established by Dwayne J. Clark, founder and CEO of Aegis Living, have launched Seattle Seniors Strong. This $100,000 community-match campaign brings together some of Seattle and King County’s most engaged companies and individuals to support homeless and homebound seniors.
According to the most recent census data, there are more than 450,000 seniors living in the region, with 9 percent living below the poverty line. The COVID-19 crisis is impacting an already vulnerable population in an even bigger way.
“Caring for seniors is embedded in our DNA,” said Dwayne J. Clark, founder and CEO of Aegis Living. “Throughout King County, seniors are homebound and not only lacking companionship but also essential items to feel safe and cared for during this unprecedented and challenging time. There isn’t a more important time than now to take care of the generation that raised us.”
Seattle Seniors Strong will be dedicated to two area organizations providing critical services and support: Sound Generations and the Pike Market Senior Center (PMSC). Through May 31, all donations by businesses and individuals will be matched dollar-for-dollar, up to $50,000 for each, by Aegis Living and the Clark Family Foundation.
Aegis Living and the Clark Family Foundation are also partnering with local pharmacy retail chain Bartell Drugs to further the reach of Seattle Seniors Strong. Collected funds will be used to purchase much-needed goods for Sound Generations and PMSC such as shelf-stable foods, toiletries, hygienic items, household cleaning supplies, and protective items like gloves, anti-bacterial solution, and sanitary wipes from Bartell Drugs. Bartell Drugs customers can also support the cause in-store as part of the check-out experience.
“We have been looking for a way to support the senior community, who has always been so loyal to Bartell’s,” said CEO Kathi Lentzsch. “Our customers are very compassionate and Seattle-centric. We believe they will gladly join us in contributing to this initiative as they are also concerned about the local at-risk population.”
Sound Generations strives to expand food security, transportation, health and wellness, and Assistance services to meet the diverse needs of the growing aging population in King County. The group administers the Meals on Wheels program for King County and the Hyde Shuttle, a fleet of 38 vans providing door-to-door service for hot meal programs, medical appointments, senior centers, grocery stores and other local destinations.
“Our work wouldn’t be possible without support from those who donate their time and resources to move our mission forward,” said Brittany Blue, Chief Marketing & Philanthropy Officer at Sound Generations. “Our staff and over 2,100 volunteers are dedicated to ensuring that older adults can live fulfilled lives in a community that respects and affirms the aging journey.”
PMSC provides a variety of services to area seniors at no cost. The staff features five social workers who have helped more 300 homeless seniors find safe and secure housing. During normal operations, PMSC also offers on-site activities, including fitness and art classes. Its meals program serves over 50,000 free, nutritious meals per year and the food bank provides free groceries, no-cook bags for homeless clients, and delivery service for homebound neighbors.
“With the support of our community, we’re able to maintain access to nutritious food and critical social services, said Mason Lowe, Deputy Director for PMSC. “During this time, we’ve adapted every part of our operation to promote hygiene and social distancing. Our goal is to continue letting homeless seniors know that their community cares.”
Aegis Living and the Clark Foundation see this campaign and $100,000 donation as the first step in a movement to inspire others to give back to area seniors. Those interested in donating or getting involved can visit SeattleSeniorsStrong.com for more information.
Aegis Living is a national leader in senior assisted living and memory care with a simple philosophy: make every day count. With more than 22 years of experience, it is known for its approach for supporting residents along the continuum of care, from light assistance to advanced dementia; an eye for innovation and staying on the frontlines of design; and an employee-centric company culture. With every community, Aegis Living creates a living environment where residents can feel at home and inspired to live life to the fullest. The privately held company is headquartered in Bellevue, WA, and operates 32 communities in Washington, California and Nevada, with 7 additional communities in development.
The Clark Family Foundation was established in 2017 by Dwayne Clark and his family to care for some of the most vulnerable people in society, elderly and our children. The Foundation is now run by three generations of Clark decedents and supports a variety of philanthropic causes: the 30/30 Project, Russell Wilson Why Not You Foundation, the Macklemore Residency Project, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Lifespring, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Seattle Film Festival, among others.