Couple opening Shawnee senior care home in memory of parents

Leah Wankum - July 8, 2019 8:00 am
Our Home Senior Care
Don and Talinda Kelly are opening a senior care home in Shawnee. Photo credit Shawnee Chamber of Commerce

When Don and Talinda Kelly decided to open their own senior care home, they wanted to provide a place of love and respect for the older generation.

The Lee’s Summit couple had just lost Don’s parents, James and Geraldine Kelly, so the new home at 5745 Rosehill Road in Shawnee is built in memory of them.

“This is literally a dream come true; God gave me vision to do this,” said Don Kelly, who is also a minister in Lee’s Summit. “This is an opportunity for me to bless people while being able to be blessed. This is an opportunity for me to give back and make the latter years of seniors very enjoyable.”

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Ronnetta Sullivan, executive director of Our Home Senior Care, said the couple experienced a type of care for their parents “that really broke their hearts,” so their hope is to give the level of care they believe seniors deserve.

“Something transpired, and they wanted to make a difference so that nobody else ever had to experience that,” Sullivan said. “If they could make a difference by creating a home for seniors, to try to make that change, then that’s what we’re doing.”

The new home plus care facility offers services similar to assisted living and features 12 private, furnished bedrooms for long-term stays.

“This home is built with the foundation that everybody who works in this community is going to take pleasure in the care that they provide for seniors, and we’re going to have above standard level of care for everyone,” Sullivan said.

Sullivan added that they also offer senior day services from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to provide caregivers a break while ensuring their seniors remain in good care.

Our Home Senior Care
The Kellys dedicated the senior care home to Don Kelly’s parents, James and Geraldine. Photo credit Shawnee Chamber of Coomerce

Our Home Senior Care is designed to allow free range of the facility for residents, with an emphasis on a “resident-centered” approach. While social and physical activities can provide positive experiences for each senior, they’re not forced to follow a strict schedule for meals and activities.

“We’re focused on providing a level of care that makes people feel like they’re still at home,” Sullivan said. “We don’t want to create any type of environment that makes them feel like they’re in an institution or that they are in a nursing home or that they’re restricted by any means.

“We want them to have their dignity. We want them to have their independence. We want them to have a quality of life, and part of enjoying the quality of life is being able to do what you want to do when you want to do it.”

The facility was built — and many of the furnishings were made — by Don Kelly’s construction company. It has a home theater-style media center, patio and gazebo outdoors, private dining space for hosting parties and bringing in guests, and a multipurpose room for fitness, exercise and yoga.

“We’re going to incorporate all kinds of activities that they really enjoy doing and try to get as many people to come and do those activities in the home,” Sullivan said, noting that they don’t provide transportation. “We want to be able to create a fun environment here in the home so they don’t have to leave home to have some sort of fun.”

An exact opening date isn’t confirmed yet while the facility awaits final inspections. Sullivan said they hope to open by Aug. 1. They are accepting applications and also hiring nurses with licensing through Kansas.

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