Building Blitz Makes An Impact

When more than 100 dedicated employees join together for an awesome cause — creating ramps for seniors with mobility challenges — the results are dynamic!  Last week, Westminster Canterbury Richmond held its Second Annual Ramp Building Blitz with our partner, project:HOMES.  Teams came out to the tents on our campus, learned the process, and went to work!  Every hour, a new team took over – throughout the two days. “We’ve sent an SOS to Lowe’s for a quick lumber delivery,” team lead Brad Burnam of project: HOMES reported early in the second day.  “These teams are really rolling!”  With motivation high, weather great, music playing and food trucks cooking, the Blitz was great fun and super productive.

Westminster Canterbury Richmond’s ramp build is a key part of our organization’s ongoing response to the community needs assessment we conducted to learn the needs of seniors in the Richmond, Virginia, region.  One of the key findings is the need for people to age in place, yet access services.  When mobility issues arise, challenges heighten and the simple solution of a ramp can make all the difference. Since there is a long waiting list for ramps, our employees are striving to make a real impact.

In addition to meeting a need, our workforce is loving the power of working together. They held multiple fundraisers to provide the $15,000 needed to purchase lumber and hardware for the ramps.  “It was so fun to do, and exciting to realize we were making a difference for seniors around Richmond,” said Leota Parandeh, who organized the effort.  “Our employees are true experts in senior care and this is an awesome way to share that expertise. It is an honor to be involved.”

To learn more or to help with other outreach efforts for seniors in our region, contact Gayle Haglund at ghaglund@wcrichmond,.org.

Celebrating and Thanking our Nursing Staff!

At Westminster Canterbury Richmond, we are so fortunate to count amongst our wonderful workforce more than 200 members of the nursing profession.  These caring teammates are a very special part of the Westminster Canterbury family. We have more than 75 Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses and more than 130 Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) across Independent and Assisted Living and the Mary Morton Parsons Health Center! Nurses and CNAs are core to our mission of providing care “…in a compassionate, professional, holistic manner…”

Each year our community commemorates National Nurses Week by highlighting the numerous contributions members of this very special and critical group of caregivers make to our organization and to those we serve. The week culminates in our Nurses Week Awards Celebration, where we present the Frances May Tabb Awards to four CNAs and the Clinical Excellence Award to one RN or LPN. Residents, their families and coworkers nominate nursing staff who have provided exceptional service. This year, we received over 174 nominations for 77 different staff members. This highlights just how much our nursing staff is appreciated! This year we also honored our residents who had careers in nursing. We are fortunate to have more than 25 of these dedicated professionals living here in our community, whose many years of service have contributed to numerous lives in so many ways. We are inspired each day by the care and compassion of these hardworking and very special people.

No matter where you encounter a nurse, the next time you experience great care and service from a nurse or a CNA, be sure to say “thank you!”  Nurses are so giving of themselves and it is important to “fill their well” with simple appreciation.

We’re happy to share with you this special slideshow of some of our residents and staff who have dedicated their careers to caring for others. If you’re interested in your own career in nursing, visit to view our openings.

We extend our congratulations to our 2019 Tabb Award and Clinical Excellence Award recipients. Pictured with Will Blackwell, Administrator and Vice President Health Services (from left) are Karis Townsend, Nedesha Giggetts, Anne Mackenzie Salmons, Alonna Brickhouse and Nancy Cammack. We are truly grateful for your amazing care and service. Thank you for all you do to ensure our residents live life well!

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Groundbreaking for a New Spiritual Enrichment Center

Westminster Canterbury Richmond is growing from our roots in faith in a new way. On Wednesday, May 22, we will celebrate the groundbreaking for a new Spiritual Enrichment Center located front and center on our campus on 1600 Westbrook Avenue.

Westminster Canterbury was founded by the Episcopal and Presbyterian churches in 1971 and opened in 1975. Throughout our history, faith of all shapes and sizes has been an important part of our community that continues to grow. Our original, historic Montague Chapel has been part of our campus since the very beginning. It first expanded in 1995. Since that time, our programming has grown to include many opportunities for worship and learning.

Our purpose today is to create a space that fosters spiritual growth and allows current and future spiritual programs to flourish. As attendance at Pastoral Care programs continues to grow, we need a space that offers more capacity for worship, lectures, small groups, fellowship and memorial services. We are excited to design a space that perfectly meets those needs! Our new space will be located at the front of our campus and will include a bigger sanctuary, a relocated Montague Chapel, meeting rooms, office, memorial garden and more.

These are exciting times at Westminster Canterbury as we grow and evolve our campus to serve the needs our residents prove are so important in their day-to-day lives. The creation of this new space will equip us to do the right things now and to evolve as new residents join our community in the coming years.

Join us for the groundbreaking on Wednesday, May 22, at 3 p.m. You may stand outside the main Center Entrance or view a live stream of the ceremony in our Sara Belle November Theater. For more information, call 804.264.6066 or email

Technology Programs at Westminster Canterbury Richmond

Technologies today enable people to stay connected and promote interactions among individuals with similar interests. For older adults, technology can improve quality of life. However, many may feel overwhelmed or intimidated when it comes to learning how to use it. Westminster Canterbury Richmond’s resident-led Technology Committee offers educational courses and seminars providing residents with the knowledge and confidence they need to use technology to their advantage.

Residents can also get one-on-one help with computer questions in our Computer Training Center or by making an appointment with the Technology Help Desk for an expert to meet them in their homes. As more and more seniors embrace using new technology, Westminster Canterbury helps them connect. Click on the link to view one of our seminars on getting the most from your iPhone. You may learn some useful tips for your day-to-day technology usage!


Technology and Innovation for Seniors

Technology is a huge part of life for all ages, including seniors! Many technology-based solutions allow people to live independently for longer, something more and more older Americans want.

For example, Uber, Lyft and other ridesharing apps are popular with older adults who do not drive any longer but still want and need to travel to their usual appointments and gatherings. Voice technology makes it easier for older adults to communicate and access services as they experience difficulty with their hands and vision. Amazon Echo allows seniors to interact with technology using their voice instead of their hands or through reading. Home automation enables seniors to control lights and thermostats using their voices, lowering the risk of falls and other complications.

At Westminster Canterbury Richmond, nearly every resident who moves to our campus comes with a smartphone or tablet, not to mention countless other smart TVs, smart speakers and other connected devices. We use technology to improve the lives of our residents, especially through K4Connect, solutions designed specifically for senior living. In just six months, the K4Connect app has been installed on more than 250 devices on our campus. Residents use it to stay up-to-date on the latest announcements, digital publications and menus. Amazon Alexa technology is integrated to make it easy to use.

A resident-led Technology Committee offers an extensive list of educational courses on everything from iPhone and Gmail to digital photography management, helping residents who may have never used these tools before to become avid users.  No matter your age, it’s never the wrong time to learn to try a new app or tool that can make day-to-day life better!

More Mission to More People

Since 1975, Westminster Canterbury Richmond has been helping seniors-in-need through our Fellowship Program by providing life care through housing, meals, medical expenses and access to all the vital living we have to offer. Each year, around 110 seniors receive support on our campus. Since the program began, more than 550 individuals have received more than $73 million in support.
We aspire to grow our Fellowship Program and find ways to reach into the community to provide more mission to more people. During the last two years we have taken steps to meet this goal by reaching out to local nonprofits that serve seniors in different ways.  Among our nonprofit partners is Senior Connections and their Friendship Cafes. We provide programming support and participate with our Friendship Café friends once a month.  Forging community partnerships, engaging our workforce who love to volunteer, and serving the greater Richmond community define our Fellowship Outreach!
This video features information on Parkinson’s Disease presented by Kathy Morton, Volunteer Resources Administrator, during our recent engagement with Friendship Café – The Guardian Place.



Will You Be a Hero to a Senior-in-Need?

For all her life, Mary cared for others. She contributed to the lives of countless children throughout her career as a public school teacher. When her parents and in-laws needed care, Mary was the one who was there for them.

Mary and her husband lived frugally on their modest income. Then her husband was critically injured. She had to stop working earlier than she had planned in order to care for him. Their modest savings quickly ran out. By the time her husband passed away, Mary had borrowed against their home, and was fighting foreclosure. Once so self-sufficient and independent, Mary needed help but had nowhere to turn. She had no other family. She couldn’t afford to see a doctor or buy medication. Keeping food on the table became a daily struggle.

She had nurtured so many lives. Who would be there to nurture her in her time of need?

Westminster Canterbury Foundation’s Fellowship Program provides a lifeline to seniors-in-need like Mary. Through your gifts to the Fellowship Program, more than 100 seniors who would have few other options receive housing, meals, medical care and all aspects of vital living found at Westminster Canterbury. But there are many more who don’t know how they will make it alone. You can be a hero to someone like Mary. Please support the Fellowship Program. With you, we can ensure a safe and secure life for these seniors-in-need.

Through your gifts to Westminster Canterbury Foundation’s Fellowship Program, you show that:

  • YOU believe that all seniors deserve a healthy, secure life.
  • YOU believe that no senior should have to choose between secure housing, nourishing meals and medical care, nor face the devastation of social isolation.
  • You believe that seniors who have given their lives to serving God and their neighbors deserve security, dignity and peace of mind.

We invite YOU to become a Fellowship hero! For more information, please contact Jeanette Ucci at 804-264-6204 or visit

Your Plan for Inspiring Generosity

Inspiring generosity makes many things possible at Westminster Canterbury Richmond. Generous donors are the lifeblood of our organization, helping us to ensure the best life possible for our residents and to cultivate leadership in senior services. What does this mean? We strive to support our residents and employees while also sharing with others in our region and industry what makes Westminster Canterbury such a special place so that all seniors can live life well.

Throughout our more than forty-year history, Westminster Canterbury has benefited from the foresight of donors who planned ahead to create a legacy that reflected the things they cared about most. Many left a gift to Westminster Canterbury Foundation in their wills. Some created arrangements like charitable gift annuities that give them income during their life while benefiting the Foundation after their lifetime.

These generous planners help Westminster Canterbury as we pursue a vibrant vision for what senior living looks like today and in the future. Your gifts strengthen what we do best – spiritual support, the arts, wellness, healthcare excellence, memory care, workforce development and intergenerational magic! Your support encourages innovation that improves lives. Our top priority, the Fellowship Program, provides security and peace of mind to seniors-in-need.

What is your plan for the future? For some tips of how to create or update your estate plan to make sure you take care of loved ones and the organizations you care about, read more here:

Observing Lent at Westminster Canterbury Richmond

Lent is a time for reflection and prayer leading us to one of the most important days of the Christian year, Easter Sunday. Over time, Lent has come to resonate with people of varied faith traditions, including those who may not practice a formal religion. Why? True, observance of Lent can follow the more traditional sense of fasting and prayer. But it can also offer a broader, more personal opportunity to reflect on one’s relationships with the rest of humanity and with God.   

Here at Westminster Canterbury Richmond, we commemorate the beginning of Lent with our Ash Wednesday Service, conducted by our Pastoral Care staff and clergy from Richmond area congregations. Another important Lenten tradition here is the publication of The Lenten Journey. Written by residents, staff and friends of Westminster Canterbury, this is a collection of devotions that challenges us to deepen our Lenten observances. More than 4,000 copies are distributed to area faith congregations. The devotions are as diverse as the writers themselves. Everyone, regardless of whether participating in a formal faith tradition or not, is likely to find a devotion within these pages that resonates with his or her soul. From…

  • A gentle reminder to be still and listen for God’s presence in our lives,
  • To an invitation to “exchange our bad habits for healthier alternatives,”
  • To comforting thoughts for those who grieve,
  • To messages of hope in a frequently hostile world,
  • To the invitation to open our eyes to the everyday miracles happening around us.

We hope you will find words of comfort and inspiration in this Westminster Canterbury tradition. You may download a copy of The Lenten Journey here:

May this Lenten Season be a time of reflection and renewal for you.

Renewal of Vows

19 years.  53 years.  69 years!  These are the number of years some of our beloved resident couples have been married.  To celebrate their love and commitment, four couples renewed their vows on Valentine’s Day, 2019. In a background of beautiful music surrounded by friends and family, these lovelies held hands, smiled and kissed…in celebration of their love and dedication to each other.  Every day is a wonderful day to celebrate love!