The Annapolis Civitan #177 presented Bello Machre with a grant check for $15,000. The purpose of the $15,000 grant is to purchase and install an overhead barrier-free lift system and automatic self-opening doors in a brand new Bello Machre home located on Spencer Drive in Glen Burnie, Maryland.
Dr. Robert T. Ireland, President and Chief Executive Officer commented, “Bello Machre is blessed to have such a wonderful community partner like our friends at the Annapolis Civitan #177. I’m so honored that we were considered in their giving mission and can’t thank the Annapolis Civitan and Chesapeake District Foundation enough for their generosity.”
Jeff Gauges, President of the Annapolis Civitan #177, commented, “We are proud to be associated with Bello Machre and their invaluable work helping people with developmental disabilities in our community.”
Civitan International was created in the early 1920s to build good citizenship. The Annapolis Club was recognized in 1926 and since then has tried to be a good neighbor to the community and those in need. The International organization, the Chesapeake District, the Annapolis Civitan Club #177, and the Foundation for Retarded and Handicapped Children of the Chesapeake District believe that helping those with a developmental disability is the highest and best way to protect and aid those who have special needs. The Annapolis Club is proud to partner with Bello Machre in its efforts to provide mainstream housing and activities for those who have intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The grant money will purchase and install permanent equipment including a barrier-free lift system and two automatic exterior door openers that will make our newest home safer and more accessible. The equipment will be installed in Bello Machre’s newest fully accessible home that broke ground in August 2011. This new home will open its doors to four people served by Bello Machre in mid-February 2012.
The barrier-free ceiling lift system is an electrically powered, overhead system that can transport a person who is physically disabled from the bedroom to the bathroom. Ceiling tracks will connect the bathroom with two adjoining bedrooms. The lift can gently transfer the individual from his/her bed to the toilet, shower, or bathtub. The bathroom is the most dangerous room in any house. The barrier-free ceiling lift provides for easy transfers and ensures staff and individual safety. In addition, this automatic system requires one staff person unlike manual systems that require two or more.
The automatic door opener converts any door into an automatic one. The remotely controlled systems would be installed at two doors of the home. Automatic door openers will assist the developmentally and physically challenged persons in this home to gain more independence. In addition, an automatic door opener provides a safe exit for individuals in wheelchairs in the event of an emergency.
Bello Machre, founded in 1972, means Home of My Heart in Gaelic. It is a non-profit organization in Anne Arundel County, Maryland that provides homes and support to children, teens, adults, and seniors with developmental disabilities. More importantly, Bello Machre enriches the lives of those served through loving care, guidance, and opportunity so that they can live life to its fullest. Employing 300 skilled professionals, Bello Machre serves 175 people in its 54 community-based homes throughout Central Maryland. Through its Support Services Programs, Bello Machre provides help and support to more than 150 individuals and families in their own homes. The Ray of Hope Program helps individuals and families obtain respite care, specialized summer camp, physical therapy, and specialized equipment; its Respite Care services provides residential support during family hospitalizations, emergencies, and vacations—24-hours a day, seven-days a week. Bello Machre serves children and adults without regard to race, religion, gender, or national origin.
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