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Growth for the elderly in Rush County





La CROSSE -- The facility sits in isolation, as it is the first of its kind in Rush County.

Locust Grove Village recently gained a new addition to its campus, giving Rush County its first assisted-living facility. The campus already houses a nursing home and an independent-living facility.

"Our campus is a full continuum of care," administrator Charlotte Rathke said. "That continuum of care is a benefit to families and the elders because not many places in central Kansas offer that continuum of care."

Rathke believes the addition of the assisted-living facility will help fuel community support and allow families to receive care without leaving the county.

"Our seniors and families were not able to receive those services in our community, so they had to go elsewhere," she said. "We feel we're meeting the needs of our community since we are a community-based organization."

The assisted-living facility provides a mid-range of services for seniors who aren't independent but don't require 24-hour support services.

"We assist people with house keeping, laundry services, medication and nursing support," Rathke said. "These are people who are physically able to make their own decisions, but just need the support because they aren't able to live alone."

The new addition was completed by more than 267 donors and more than $758,000. The facility has the capacity for 17 residents.

"With Rush County not having assisted-living services before, it's a learning curve as people find out about what kind of things we do," Rathke said.

Rathke has been in nursing for 30 years and an administrator at Locust Grove since 2004.

"It's part of my faith," she said. "I believe God gave me the talent to do this work, and seniors deserve quality and personal attention."