Since its inception, the goal of Lakeside Oasis in Buffalo, MN, has been to provide compassionate care for all hospice residents regardless of ability to pay.
The Community Health Foundation of Wright County Golf Tournament makes that goal a reality by funding the Bridge Program. That was the case for the tournament on July 17, 2023, which raised more than $30,000 for the program.
“The community of Wright County rises to the occasion to have fun with us at this golf tournament and raise money,” says Matt Crawford, Cassia Vice President of Philanthropy. “As a Christian organization, we are called to serve those of the greatest need, absolutely including under-resourced people. They allow us to carry out that value we hold dear.”
Decades of Support
For the last 23 years, the CHFWC Golf Tournament has been raising funds for various needs throughout Wright County. The past three or four tournaments have specifically benefited the Bridge Program to bridge the gap for Lakeside Oasis hospice residents facing financial difficulty.
Matt explains why that is necessary.
“Cassia knew from experience that about two-thirds of long term care residents we serve are utilizing Medicaid and have outlived their resources and ability to pay privately,” he says. “That’s something we see across the industry. With Lakeside Oasis, it is particularly challenging because people often pass away before they can successfully complete the application process for Medicaid. As we began to experience that a lot at Lakeside Oasis, we realized that it would be unsustainable without help.”
So, Cassia began looking for a solution.
“To avoid doing what some organizations do, which is limit the number of financially under-resourced residents, we turned to the community to help us,” Matt says.
The Impact of the Bridge Program
“Hospice ensures that people in their last days, weeks or months get to experience end of life with dignity, comfort, pain management, love, companionship and fullness of life,” Matt says. “We simply can’t imagine limiting people’s ability to experience that because of their financial circumstances.”
And, because of the Bridge Program, such limitations do not exist.
“It pays for end-of-life and palliative care that otherwise some families would worry about it,” Lake Ridge Administrator Angie Nyamburi says. “The cost could be a hindrance to them coming to us … (The Bridge Fund) helps people have care they otherwise can’t afford.”
Compassionate Care in a Beautiful Place
Lakeside Oasis provides a unique homelike setting filled with care, comfort and peace for hospice residents and their loved ones.
“It’s just so beautiful here; the setting at our Lakeside Oasis unit is a very comforting setting due to our donors,” Angie says. “ … That end of our building is new, refreshed and bright. All our private suites have views of Buffalo Lake and many people love the view of the lake from their bed.”
Angie and the Lakeside Oasis staff get to know the residents and their families.
“I get to hear the stories and see their experiences,” Angie says. “I very rarely hear a family or resident not being appreciative of the opportunity to spend their last days in the Oasis.”
Words of Thanks
Angie had the opportunity to welcome golfers to the hole-in-one competition during the tournament.
“I want to thank everybody, so I think that was the perfect job for me,” Angie says.
She says she cherishes the connections she made and the support of all the golfers and sponsors.
“I’m very much a relationship person and appreciative of everything,” she says. “People spent their day, time and money for us and it’s very much appreciated.”
Angie says she enjoyed the tournament so much that she is considering participating in a different way in 2024.
“Next year, maybe I’ll golf,” she says. “I’m not a golfer, so that would be fun to see.”