WALTHAM, MA—The Benchmark One Company Fund, a nonprofit which provides grants to Benchmark Senior Living employees in times of need, reports that its associate and corporate donations increased by more than 41% to $667,000 in 2022.
The One Company Fund is a senior living industry first, launched in 2008 to give financial assistance to those who provide Benchmark residents with excellent care and experiences.
“The fact that donations increased so dramatically—despite a turbulent economic environment—speaks to the generosity and commitment our associates and corporate sponsors have to supporting the individuals who care for and bring so much happiness to our residents,” said Tom Grape, CEO and chairman of Benchmark. “It is inspiring to see One Company Fund supporters continue to open their hearts and their wallets to those facing unforeseen challenges.”
Last year, the fund gave $325,000 in grants to associates who couldn’t purchase the necessities of life or meet financial demands created by an emergency.
Rosie Belizaire, CNA, a widow who for nine years has cared for residents at Evans Park at Newton Corner, was one of many associates who benefited from the fund, when a fire destroyed her home.
“Everything was gone. Through the fund, I was able to access $6,750 to get me settled into a new apartment. My children and I were so happy. If it wasn’t for the fund’s help again, I don’t know what I would have done,” said Belizaire, who had previously accessed the fund several years ago to help family in her native Haiti following the earthquake and hurricane.
The One Company Fund was also there for Jim Salley, the director of dining services at The Atrium at Rocky Hill for over three years. In 2001, he was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. As a chef who loves food, he was devastated. “It’s the worst thing that could’ve happened to me,” he said.
The fund gave him $9,000 to cover out-of-pocket medical expenses.
“The One Company Fund is underestimated. In a million years, I never thought I would get cancer. People overlook it because they don’t think something will happen to them. You never know what could happen,” said Salley, who is now cancer-free.
Since the fund launched 15 years ago, it has raised over $6 million and given $3.2 million in associate grants to those affected by natural disasters, personal tragedies and other unexpected challenges.