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2016 CNA Scholars Begin Studies

We are proud to introduce the second group of Agrace CNA Scholars, who will start Madison College’s fall Nursing Assistant program soon. From left, are Shaquilla Kane, Middleton HS; Miya Bowen, Monona Grove HS; Dianey Gastelum, Madison West HS and LaChe Palmer, Innovative and Alternative HS–Work & Learn Center.

Itzel Fuentes-Sánchez (right), with LPN Elly Puig, joined our staff in 2015 after graduating from the CNA Scholars program.

Itzel Fuentes-Sánchez (right), with LPN
Elly Puig, joined our staff in 2015 after graduating from the CNA Scholars program.

The Agrace CNA Scholars program provides CNA education, training and certification, plus the opportunity for a CNA job with Agrace after certification. New this year, Boys and Girls Club will provide a college-readniness “boot camp” at Edgewood College, and the Urban League of Greater Madison will offer guidance and support to the CNA Scholars through its ADVANCE Employment Services program.

The Minority CNA Scholars program is generously funded by American Family Insurance, and the Lester and Barb Palmer family in memory of Mike Palmer, partners who share our commitment to providing opportunities for people of color in this community.


Agrace Affiliates with UW Health, UnityPoint Health

affiliation_logosIn April, Agrace joined a new affiliation with two major health systems in southern Wisconsin, UW Health and UnityPoint Health. The goal of the agreement is to collaborate to more effectively serve patients’ needs at the end of life—which clearly aligns with Agrace’s mission and vision.

The affiliation gives our clinical leaders a chance to work together with UW Health and UnityPoint to help make palliative care and hospice services a more common part of patients’ care planning.


Agrace Expands into Northern Illinois

illinois_service_map-1After 38 years of providing quality hospice care in Wisconsin, Agrace is expanding across the state line. We plan to start serving patients in northern Illinois—on a limited basis—later this year.

Why expand to Illinois? There is opportunity for greater hospice utilization in northern Illinois, and our beautiful, homelike Janesville inpatient unit is only a 40-minute drive from Rockford, which has no similar facility.

We’ve hired a small team of experienced, local hospice professionals in Rockford, who are working with us to establish Agrace as a licensed hospice provider in Illinois. We will start slowly, eventually serving four counties (see map above).

Local volunteers needed!

Before Agrace can enroll Illinois patients, we must have local volunteers who can provide support, such as companionship, transportation and caregiver relief for patients and their families. If you know anyone who might like to help, please encourage them to email volunteer@agrace.org or call us at (608) 327-7163. Thank you!


Care for All: For Gary, Just Plane Necessary

As a truck driver, Gary* traveled the country, often passing by the EAA AirVenture Museum in
Oshkosh. Although he loved airplanes, Gary never made time to visit. But early this summer, as an Agrace patient, Gary wished for—and got—a chance to finally make that stop.

Gary had hoped to go to the annual EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) air show in July, but realized he might not live long enough. So within days of learning of his wish to see the museum, Agrace staff arranged medical transportation and assembled a care package for Gary’s trip. A local pastor accompanied him, and a museum volunteer served as their personal tour guide for the day.

Care for All: It was especially important for us to fulfill this wish, because despite a lifetime of working hard, Gary is homeless. He sleeps on a cot in the small back room of a garage, which has neither its own bathroom nor air conditioning. He was alone—until he enrolled with Agrace. Thanks to funding from Agrace’s Care for All program, Gary is spending his last months in the compassionate care of Agrace staff and volunteers.

Our Patients Need Your Help

When you donate to Agrace’s Care for All Endowment Campaign, you give patients like Gary access to greater comfort and dignity in their final months. Donate online or call (608) 327-7180.

* Name changed to protect patient privacy.



Care for All Endowment Campaign: DeAtleys’ $250,000 Gift Lifts Endowment Fund Closer to Goal

From their hilltop home near Mount Horeb, Bill and Jan DeAtley can see for miles. Fortunately for Agrace, the generous couple is keeping a careful eye out for opportunities to help those truly in need.

The DeAtleys recently became donors to Agrace’s Care for All Endowment Campaign, with a generous $250,000 gift! They joined hundreds of other donors who have collectively pledged more than $4 million to date, toward our $15 million goal.

Bill DeAtley, a retired engineer/business owner, and Jan, a retired speech pathologist, have made local charitable causes their full-time commitment since moving to rural southern Wisconsin 17 years ago. Through active leadership and giving, the couple has supported several local nonprofit organizations that focus on helping families and children.

Why the large gift to Agrace? When Jan’s mother had care from Agrace for her last few days, they saw the impact of hospice care. Then in 2015, Pete Lundberg, a highly committed Agrace donor and volunteer, invited them to learn about Care for All.

“This is the type of opportunity we’re drawn to, because it meets basic needs,” Jan explains. “People who don’t have anything don’t think they deserve anything. Care for All is giving people the chance to have dignity, when perhaps they never expected it.”

Bill adds, “If something tugs at our heartstrings, we give. We are supporting this campaign because it’s helping people who really need help.”

Jan and Bill DeAtley invite you to join them in supporting Care for All—with gifts of absolutely any amount. Jan emphasizes: “Remember that no matter what you give, it helps.”


Celebrating the Gift of Dignity—from Cost Cutters

costcutters-volunteer-anniversaryEach Thursday, stylists from Cost Cutters come to Agrace in Madison to provide free haircuts and hairstyling to patients at our on-site salon. Six Agrace volunteers also help each week with scheduling, shampooing and transporting patients. In June we celebrated Cost Cutters’ 10th anniversary at Agrace with their stylists, owner Bill Kaminski and Agrace salon volunteers. Thank you for giving our patients the gift of dignity!


Zimbrick Honda Donates 2016 Civic for Auto Raffle

auto-raffleThe 2016 Agrace Auto Raffle sponsored by Zimbrick Honda is underway! You can buy tickets now—and anxiously await the final drawing on September 13. This year, Zimbrick Honda has generously donated a sporty, new 2016 Honda Civic LX sedan as the raffle prize.

Our goal is to raise $30,000 to benefit Agrace patients and their families. In addition to Zimbrick Honda, we also have support from lead sponsors Adams Outdoor Advertising, Capital Newspapers, Charter Communications, Cost Cutters Family Hair Salons, Goldstein & Associates, Madison Mallards and Midwest Family Marketing.

Tickets are just $5 each, or five for $20. For raffle rules and details, including where tickets are being sold, visit winthecivic.org.

Sauk County Golfs “A Round with Agrace”

More than 100 golfers, sponsors and volunteers joined us for the first-ever A Round with Agrace fundraiser on July 19 at Trappers Turn in Wisconsin Dells. This successful, new event was a chance for donors in Sauk County to support Agrace while they enjoyed food, games, prizes and 18 holes on an award-winning golf course.

Gala on the Green Flourishes

On June 4, 100 ladies and gentlemen in their finest summer attire joined Agrace at the Janesville Country Club for the 2016 Gala on the Green. The event featured a fantastic silent auction, a golf-ball drawing game, live auction and a putting contest under the lights! Congratulations to Joyce Albright (second from right), our top putter, who won a foursome at the Country Club.

Sunny Skies for Butterflies

With sunny skies and warm temperatures, 260 people gathered June 26 at Agrace’s second annual Butterfly Memorial Dedication in Janesville to celebrate and honor their loved ones with poems, songs, and the reading of names of those being honored.


Pam Edwards Joins Agrace as CCO

Pamela Edwards, RN, CHPN, has joined Agrace as our chief clinical officer. She leads the practices of the clinical staff on Agrace’s interdisciplinary teams of hospice care providers. Pam was previously vice president of clinical services for Covenant Hospice, a nonprofit hospice in Pensacola, Fla., and also served in the U.S Army Nurse Corps for nine years.



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