Mary Ann Stallings, founder and CEO of Bridge to Better Living (BBL), and her entire leadership team are committed to improving the lives of seniors and veterans, not only through their work helping seniors transition into retirement communities, but also through their community activities. By Cindy Charette
Mary Ann Stallings, founder and CEO of Bridge to Better Living (BBL), and her entire leadership team are committed to improving the lives of seniors and veterans, not only through their work helping seniors transition into retirement communities, but also through their community activities.
The BBL team is well-versed in programs available to veterans and their spouses that can offset or even fully cover the costs of long-term care. Helping their clients understand these benefits while navigating the myriad options involved in the transition to senior living is BBL’s mission.
Stallings said many veterans and their spouses are not aware of the benefits available to them. For instance, those meeting certain criteria may be eligible for 100% coverage for long-term care, she said. Bridge to Better Living has also been able to place qualified veterans and/or spouses in assisted living communities they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford, with assistance from the Veterans Aid and Attendance program.
In their own community of Lincoln, Nebraska, members of the BBL leadership team advocate for the elderly and veterans through their involvement with the Seniors Foundation. As former president, Stallings played an instrumental role in the development of a veterans’ and senior living community named Victory Park. Stallings even traveled to Washington, D.C. to lobby lawmakers for additional services, including bus transportation and improved parking at the Victory Park campus.
In continuing efforts to support Victory Park, Kristine Dykeman-Schoening, BBL director of development, now serves as Seniors Foundation president, while Robbie Nathan, BBL director of training/staff development, serves as board secretary. Dykeman-Schoening will focus on fundraising and outreach to potential partners to help provide additional amenities for veterans and seniors, such as fitness, nutrition, and healthcare management.
Victory Park’s Veterans Assisted Supportive Housing program offers other services, including a food pantry, mobile library, community events and a picnic area.
As the first community of its kind in the U.S., Victory Park is on the Veterans Administration campus, which is home to a VA hospital built in 1929. When completed, the Victory Park campus will include a 100,000-square-foot clinic with state-of-the-art testing and equipment, along with additional housing and offices.
For more information on Bridge to Better Living franchising, visit bridgetobetterliving.com.
– Cindy Charette