Facilities that cater to seniors have popped up across the Cy-Fair community in recent years, but one new nonprofit concept that opened last year is starting to take off.
VaughnGage Healthy Aging Center is the first and only adult day center in the Cy-Fair area, founder and CEO Asheva Phillips said.
As an adult day center, Phillips said she considers VaughnGage as an alternative to home care and nursing homes, which can be costly, and family members trying to provide care themselves, which can be overwhelming.
“We’re providing a service that was previously unavailable to the people in this area,” she said. “Many of our residents eventually transfer into a full-time care situation, and when they do, we are able to provide their families with information on their needs and behaviors from their time here.”
Seniors attend VaughnGage for a cost of $10 per hour. Caregivers can sign them up for full days, which run from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., or half days, which run from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
The center provides transportation within a 14-mile radius for a $7 fee, including for seniors in wheelchairs. It can also transport patrons beyond the 14-mile radius for an additional cost based on how far out they need to drive.
About 90 percent of the seniors who come to VaughnGage are dealing with issues related to memory loss, including Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, Phillips said. A lot of the programming the staff develop is focused on things that can keep clients’ memories sharp.
A certified therapeutic recreation specialist on staff organizes field trips for the seniors to venues, such as bowling alleys and movie theaters.
“There are places that most people think a person with memory problems is no longer able to go, but our CTRS proves they can still do it,” Phillips said. “We challenge them to live.”
The ability to socialize with people outside of their homes and develop relationships also helps preserve memory, Phillips said.
One aspect that makes VaughnGage different from other senior care facilities is the benefits for caregivers, Phillips said. These include counseling sessions and organized events they can attend with their loved ones.
“We recently hosted a dinner with
a live band at our facility,” she said. “It can be hard to do those kinds of things at an actual restaurant.”
In February, VaughnGage contracted to provide free care to veterans through the Veterans Administration. Area veterans can speak with their VA doctors to get the proper paperwork submitted.
“They start at three days a week, and if they like the program, they can come for five days a week at no cost,” Phillips said.
Caregivers who have signed up family members to attend VaughnGage say the center has allowed them to live their own lives while knowing their loved ones are being cared for.
“Before VaughnGage [my mother] would spend most of her day sleeping or watching TV,” caregiver Carol Gheida said. “[She] seems to love the entertainment and socialization with the other guests and staff, and we have also seen a significant improvement in her cognitive function.”
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-4 p.m.