100% Health Coverage for Nurses

January 29, 2018 

PioneerCare Fully Covers Health Insurance Premiums for Nurses

Starting in February, PioneerCare will now pay 100% of the health insurance premium towards the single-only 5000 HD/HSA health plan offered by our provider, currently Health Partners, for full-time staff nurses employed at PioneerCare.

To be considered full-time, nurses need to work an average of 30 hours a week or more. This new benefit applies to both current and new nurses at PioneerCare. Management staff are not eligible.

Nurses who seek family coverage through PioneerCare will have the option to pay the difference between the single policy and family policy. Based on current premium rates, this new benefit provides over $100 in additional income per month for those who are currently enrolled in PioneerCare’s health coverage.

This benefit will be in effect for a three-year trial basis and will be reevaluated for continuation in December 2020.

To learn more, contact the PioneerCare Human Resources Team by email or by phone at 218-998-1500.

Pergola Project Completed

December 22, 2017 

Residents and patients of PioneerCare Center received an early Christmas present and it’s now been constructed in the building’s front garden. While the gift will be more enjoyable in warmer months, the new pergola already adds architectural interest. 

The project was originally the brainchild of Jody Sanborn, a former maintenance worker at Pioneer with a talent for timber frame construction. When the care center was built in 2011 it included a circular patio space, 30 feet in diameter, with a fountain serving as a focal point. The entire patio is surrounded by perennial flowers, bushes, and ornamental trees. While it serves as a retreat to enjoy the outdoors, Sanborn noted the patio’s lack of shade. His proposal for a pergola offered a mix of shade and sunny options for people to maximize use of the space.

“It’s important for a person’s well-being to connect with the outdoor environment,” said Nathan Johnson, PioneerCare’s CEO. “The care center offers numerous choices for individuals to do that with generous use of windows, multiple patios, our glass-walled Garden Court with its indoor waterfall, and now the pergola in the front garden.”

Based on a small model Sanborn built several years ago, the PioneerCare Auxiliary and PioneerCare Foundation launched a joint fundraising appeal last spring. According to Steve Guttormson, the foundation’s executive director, donors contributed $22,000 toward the project.

“People were intrigued by the model,” Guttormson said. “They could see it would be a worthwhile addition to the care center grounds and they were eager to contribute.”

Once fundraising was complete and it was time to build, Sanborn had moved on to working full time for a firm erecting wind generators. He was no longer available to steer the project to completion, so he turned the project over to Spidahl Woodworks.

Ben Spidahl, a timber framer in his own right and collaborator with Sanborn on other projects, finalized the design based on the model Sanborn had created. “I was really excited to build a circular timber frame structure like this,” said Spidahl. “I knew the layout and joinery would be challenging but that’s what makes this kind of work fun!”

Large timbers were needed to make the semi-circular plates of the pergola’s inner ring and perimeter, so Spidahl ordered western red cedar timbers from a specialty mill in Spokane, Washington. Red cedar is known for strength, beauty, and weather-resistant qualities.

He began fabricating the different components of the pergola in late October at a shop in Pelican Rapids. With most of the work done there in a controlled environment, on-site installation was completed in just two days.

Spidahl described the assembly as “putting together a big three-dimensional puzzle.” He notes that a smooth assembly is a testament to meticulous planning and expertly executed layout and joinery.

The design uses traditional timber frame construction. The centuries-old technique requires specialized skill and precision to complete, including mortise and tenon joinery with hardwood dowels pinning the joints. Such construction is extremely sturdy and emphasizes the beauty of wood. “Timber framing is like furniture building on a grand scale,” says Spidahl. “It’s hard work and nerve-wracking at times because every cut counts. When you have no extra material and all your joinery is exposed you have to get it right the first time.  But the end result is very gratifying! I’m happy that my work will provide a space of peace and beauty for many people to enjoy.”

The pergola makes the most of the circular patio’s footprint. Three wedge shapes, equally spaced around the circle, meet with a middle ring over the fountain. All the wood surfaces were treated with a weather-resistant penetrating oil prior to assembly. Threaded rods anchor the structure to the concrete patio.

“It’s outstanding,” Johnson said. “Seeing the structure in place makes us look forward to spring.”

Those interested in supporting projects through Pioneer Foundation can contribute online at GiveMn.org or contact the Foundation directly.

CNA Class Begins Feb 6

December 22, 2017 

PioneerCare pays training expenses and certification exam cost if you successfully complete the program and become a CNA at PioneerCare. If you’re age 16 or older, apply online today!
Apply for a CNA position, interview and try a shadowing experience to see what it’s like. Complete the background study and the NCRC Assessment through the Minnesota Workforce Center. If you’re accepted, PioneerCare will help you sign up for the course.

Class meets on the M State-Fergus Falls campus:

  • Feb 6-8, 13-15, 20-22: 4:00 pm to 10:00 pm
  • Feb 27: 2:00 pm to 10:00 pm (including Clinical Orientation)
  • March 3-4: 6:00 am to 4:30 pm (Clinical Experience)
  • March 8: Nurse Assistant Exam at 4:00 pm

PioneerCare starts new CNAs at $14/hour…

…Plus benefits including $1/hour added pay for evening and night shifts, scholarship opportunities, paid time off, and full-time benefits including 401K, health and dental insurance, and more!

$50,000 by Year’s End

December 18, 2017 

PioneerCare Foundation has set a goal of raising $50,000 by December 31, 2017. This year-end appeal offers you the opportunity to share in the important mission of PioneerCare. Donated funds help make PioneerCare the exceptional provider of services and amenities for older adults and people living with chronic conditions.

Such donations recently funded:

  • a new front garden pergola for shade at PioneerCare Center,
  • renovations of Pioneer Cottages Memory Care,
  • an activities bus and vans for resident transportation,
  • high-tech diagnostic equipment,
  • nursing scholarships,
  • and more.

Be part of the movement to support the PioneerCare mission and help us reach $50,000 by December 31, 2017. Donate online through GiveMN.org or send to PioneerCare Foundation, 1131 Mabelle Avenue S, Fergus Falls, MN 56537. A gift in any amount gets us closer to our goal!

Pioneer Home Foundation, doing business as PioneerCare Foundation, is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization.

The First Bites

December 12, 2017 

Deconstruction began in earnest on December 12, 2017, at our original site, taking a major step in preparing for the future in this special ministry of care.

Lighting Ceremony

December 1, 2017 

Following a flurry of decorating, PioneerCare Center held its annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday, December 1. Musical highlights included “Oh How Beautiful the Sky” arranged (and played) by Susan Smith Clambey. Thank you, Susan, for sharing your musical talent with us!

Give to the Max Day

November 10, 2017 

PioneerCare Foundation is inviting new donors to join the giving movement to support the mission of PioneerCare and to continue the vision of caring for those who cared for us.

Minnesota’s Give to the Max Day is Thursday, November 16, and gives people the opportunity to donate online through its web site, GiveMN.org. PioneerCare Foundation (listed in GiveMn.org by its legal name, Pioneer Home Foundation) has a profile page that can be accessed directly here.

Donations make an impact: Last year PioneerCare Foundation provided funds to purchase diagnostic technology to serve patients in Pioneer ShortStay and other areas of our care center. Support from PioneerCare Foundation last year also made over $87,000 in building improvements to Pioneer Cottages Memory Care in Fergus Falls. In 2015, PioneerCare Foundation raised $150,000 to buy a new activity bus and replace vans to escort residents to daily appointments – just another example of the impact made by donors.

Your donation on Give to the Max Day also may help PioneerCare Foundation receive an additional donation of $1,000. How? On November 16, every gift made through the GiveMN.org web site will be entered into an hourly drawing for a $1,000 GiveMN Golden Ticket to be awarded to a nonprofit organization. Your gift of $10 or more could instantly turn into an extra $1,000. 

Here’s the really exciting part: One donation made on GiveMN.org during the Give to the Max campaign will be randomly selected to receive a $10,000 Super-Sized GiveMN Golden Ticket.

The more gifts PioneerCare Foundation generates on GiveMN.org during Give to the Max Day, the more our chances increase to receive that additional $10,000 donation. Imagine what we could do with $10,000!

If you would like more details about PioneerCare Foundation or would like to donate directly, please contact Steve Guttormson, PioneerCare Foundation Director.

Auxiliary’s Annual Pie Sale

November 1, 2017 

PioneerCare Auxiliary’s annual pie sale fundraiser is now in progress. Orders must be placed by Friday, November 10.

Choose from a delicious variety including pumpkin, apple caramel nut, pecan, french silk, fruits of the forest, blueberry gourmet, strawberry rhubarb, and peach. Apple turnovers are also available. Funds raised go to support projects and programs to directly benefit residents of PioneerCare.

Stop by PioneerCare Center to pick up your order form or download/print your own copy:

Holiday Pie Sale Fundraiser-2017

CNA Class Begins Dec 19

October 27, 2017 

PioneerCare provides free Nursing Assistant training for qualified candidates ages 16 and older.

Apply online now for a CNA position, interview and shadowing experience: Try a shift before you begin. Complete the background study and the NCRC Assessment through the Minnesota Workforce Center. If you’re accepted, PioneerCare will help you register for the course. Class meets on the M State-Fergus Falls campus:

  • Dec. 19-20: 4:00 pm to 9:30 pm
  • Dec. 21-22, 26, 27 & 29: 8:00 am to 4:30 pm
  • Dec. 28: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Jan 3-4, Clinical Experience: 3:30 pm to 9:00 pm
  • Jan 6, Clinical Experience: 6:00 am to 4:30 pm
  • Jan 11: Nurse Assistant Exam at 4:00 pm

PioneerCare pays training expenses, including cost of certification exam, if you successfully complete the program and become a Certified Nursing Assistant at PioneerCare. Pioneer starts new CNAs at $14/hour plus benefits including $1/hour added pay for evening and night shifts, scholarship opportunities, paid time off, and full-time benefits including 401K, health and dental insurance, and more!

Apply online here or call PioneerCare Human Resources at 218.998.1500. PioneerCare is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Cook – Full Time

October 27, 2017 

Ready to take your cooking experience to a different level? The PioneerCare culinary team seeks a full time cook. Day shifts include weekend and holiday rotation. The successful candidate must work well independently, demonstrate strong customer service skills and pass a criminal background check. ServSafe certification preferred; however, we may help the successful candidate obtain it.

Benefits include paid time off, 401k, voluntary insurance benefits, employee wellness gym and more. Apply online here or phone 218.998.1500 to speak with Human Resources. PioneerCare is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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