A family pleased with care provided at Pathfinder Village in Edmeston is saying ``thank you’’ with $1 million to further care and programs.
Pathfinder Village, a residential and program facility for people with Down syndrome, will expand elder-care services, thanks to a gift from Jane Davey Hamilton Warriner of Philadelphia.
Warriner and Edward Klees, also of Philadelphia — whose brother, Peter Hamilton, had lived at Pathfinder Village from 1998 to 2005 — announced the gift at Pathfinder’s 30th anniversary dinner Friday night at the Otesaga Resort Hotel in Cooperstown.
“We are very honored to be giving this gift to Pathfinder,’’ Warriner said in a prepared statement. ``Thank you very much for the love, care and support you gave Peter, and your friendship throughout the years. Pathfinder is a wonderful place that transforms lives.’’
Pathfinder Village CEO Paul C. Landers said Monday that the announcement drew gasps from some of the 150 people attending the event.
The gift establishes the Jane Davey Hamilton Family Endowment, in memory of Warriner’s mother, Landers said.
“It’s difficult to express a level of gratitude that comes close to matching this level of generosity,’’ Landers said in a media release. ``This family is not only making a financial commitment to Pathfinder, but they have pledged their time and energy to help us fulfill our mission. This level of generosity is extraordinary! The Jane Davey Hamilton Endowment is a significant step toward Pathfinder becoming complete as a community care model.”
Pathfinder Village provides residential, educational, vocational and recreational programs to 95 people with Down syndrome or other developmental disabilities. The campus is located on state Route 80, two miles east of Edmeston and 15 miles west of Cooperstown.
Klees said he and Warriner ``have been extremely pleased’’ with Pathfinder, and the couple has met with Landers to discuss the aging demographic.
``We realized our goals are almost identical: To address the residents’ long term needs as they age; to provide expanded family support, education and outreach services; and to provide specialized training and support for staff,’’ Klees said in a prepared statement.``We have committed ourselves to helping Pathfinder accomplish these goals and to raise the funds necessary to support Pathfinder’s families, staff and most importantly, the residents.”
Landers said facilities modifications, housing and staff training and additions are estimated to cost between $3 million and $4 million.
Pathfinder was founded to care for children with Down syndrome, but the population has grown up and needs different services as it ages. A goal is to create an environment where residents can ``age in place’’ instead of having to be moved to a more restricted environment, such as a nursing home or hospital, Landers said.
The late Peter Hamilton moved to Pathfinder in his 40s or 50s, Landers said, and later moved to a nursing home.
He said the average life span of a person with Down syndrome is 60 years, compared to 25 years three decades ago when Pathfinder Village opened.
More than half of the village’s population is 35 or older, a media release said.
Pathfinder Village has 200 employees. The anniversary celebration continued in Edmeston on Saturday with a Friends and Family Day, which featured traditional dance workshops, art display and workshops, the release said.