2016 Marks the 110th Anniversary of United Methodist Retirement Communities

United Methodist Retirement Communities (UMRC), with headquarters in Chelsea, Michigan, is proud to announce its 110th anniversary of providing outstanding care and services to older adults.

UMRC was founded in 1906 at a time when “there was no Social Security, no such thing as a retirement community, and no safety net for senior citizens,” explains John Thorhauer, UMRC President and CEO. “Our Methodist founders dreamed of a better way to serve older adults.”

Their idea for an innovative and faith-based means of caring for seniors was visionary in its day and caught the attention of local stove manufacturer Frank Porter Glazier, who donated 33 acres from a former county fairground site for the project. In 1906, ground was broken to create the Chelsea “Old People’s Home.”

While much has changed, UMRC’s commitment to providing the highest quality, cutting-edge care for all seniors remains steadfast. Today, UMRC offers Michigan’s most diverse housing options and services to seniors of all income levels, including market rate and affordable independent and assisted living options, skilled nursing and rehabilitation, specialized dementia and Alzheimer’s care, innovative therapy, home healthcare, and Programs of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly, or PACE.

Over the last six years alone, UMRC has expanded from three locations to nine in Chelsea, Dexter, Ann Arbor, Detroit, Ypsilanti, Lansing, and Jackson, serving over 1,600 older adults annually across twelve Michigan counties. “As the senior population continues to grow, our vision is to double the number of older adults UMRC serves, in the ways they want and need services to be delivered, while focusing on UMRC’s faith-based mission,” says Thorhauer.

“Our founders believed in charitable care for older adults who had outlived their savings,” adds UMRC Foundation President, Wendy Brightman. “Their belief remains the cornerstone of UMRC’s faith-based mission.” In 1998, the UMRC Foundation was created as the fundraising arm for UMRC. “Thanks to our generous donors, we are proud the UMRC Foundation has provided over $15 million in benevolent care since then for residents who have exhausted their resources.”