Keuka Comfort Care Home inspires Bampa’s House

August 09. 2016 3:48PM

Keuka Comfort Care Home has been an inspiration for many in the community who support its mission to serve people at the end of their life, and now it’s an inspiration for a similar program in Corning.

Jim Dugan, known affectionately as “Bampa” to his three grandsons, was a big part of the Corning-Painted Post Community, spending his career at Corning Community College, volunteering with the Lion’s Club and more. Now, his name will be forever connected to a Comfort Care home in Corning that will mirror the program at the Penn Yan facility, and be named “Bampa’s House.”

After a diagnosis of terminal cancer, Jim and his family searched for a place for him to spend his final days close to home. The only option was a long term care facility.

The Corning community did not have a hospice care facility, but it will in the future because Dugan’s family has started a non-profit organization, Corning Comfort Care Inc., to establish a home in that community.

Joan Dugan Wilson, who lives on Keuka Lake, is Dugan’s sister, and she is the president of the Board of Directors of Corning Comfort Care. Living on Keuka Lake, she has become familiar with Keuka Comfort Care Home, which opened in 2007. The Keuka Comfort Care Committee established and constructed the home in two years at roughly one-third of the budget due to community support.

In a recent email, Wilson wrote,”It is very clear to me that we would not be where we are today without the incredible help and support we have received from Donna Payne and her staff. Donna has shared their history, methodology, philosophies, and more. She even takes the initiative to call or write to me when she thinks of something we should know. She has allowed us to offer tours to countless interested parties because she understands the need people have to actually ‘see’ what a home looks and feels like. She is the best! She believes wholeheartedly in the comfort care model, and her enthusiasm inspires us to continue on this sometimes difficult, but needed journey to establish a home in the Corning area.”

Wilson says the organization has received pledges for nearly $50,000, and several fundraising events are being planned. Other promotional and fundraising efforts are also underway.

The group is looking at potential properties for construction and at existing homes that might be adapted for use as a comfort care home, but no decisions have been made.

“Establishing Bampa’s House will take time, a great deal of effort, and, of course, continuous funding. Other comfort care homes in the area have averaged 3 years of work before opening their doors to residents, and we hope to match or exceed that goal,” notes the brochure for Corning Comfort Care.