Creating Joy Where There is Need:
How one Nonprofit Strives to Meet the Growing Demand of their Community
“To build an organization filling a gap in the community, operating with a business mind and a good heart, and staffed with the right employees, is the greatest achievement a nonprofit can achieve. At Joy’s House, we hire and retain employees based on skill, will, and culture,” says Tina McIntosh, President and CEO at Joy’s House Adult Day Service. “I can say that I have the greatest co-workers, and they are consistently better at their jobs than me, which is a big part of the reason we are so successful.”
Voted the most outstanding adult day care service in the nation in 2016, by the National Adult Day Service Association, Joy’s House—named after the emotion and not a person—benefits the community with adult day services at locations in Broad Ripple and University of Indianapolis. Joy’s House supports families by providing exceptional day services for their Guests, adults living with disabilities and life-altering diagnoses.
Since founding Joy’s House nearly twenty years ago, McIntosh has witnessed her vision, and the needs of her community, grow in step. “When Joy’s House started, my dream was the little house that was here from the beginning. How it has grown to where we are right now is amazing. This place is the dream of the board and staff and families who we serve every day,” says McIntosh.
Meeting the growing demand of the community is paramount to Joy’s House. According to a recent study by the AARP, Inc., 1.34 million Indiana Residents provided unpaid care for a loved one, placing the economic value of their care at $9.4 billion.
Joy’s House serves over 150 Guests (clients) each year, many of whom attend five days per week. Family caregivers, who are often spouses, family members or friends, bring their loved ones to Joy’s House so they can continue to work, stay involved in the community, and take care of themselves. Caregivers leave feeling secure that their loved ones are safe, well-cared for and benefiting from programs, while also offering activities designed to enrich their lives. Joy’s House also hosts two A Day Away Caregiver Retreats, facilitates Caregiver Expression sessions, and produces 51 weeks of Caregiver Crossing, a radio show for those who are currently caregiving.
“When Joy’s House started, my dream was the little house that was here from the beginning. How it has grown to where we are right now is amazing. This place is the dream of the board and staff and families who we serve every day,”
– Tina McIntosh, President and CEO
In addition to the challenge of meeting the needs of the community through caregiver services, caregiver retreats, and their radio show, Joy’s House rises to the challenges of running a growing business with Barnes Dennig: “There are so many layers beneath fulfilling the mission of a non-profit. Because of the strong guidance and business minds at Barnes Dennig, we have been able to operate with our heads and our hearts,” says McIntosh. “They truly care about our mission, and they’re real about everything that they do with us. Even when the feedback is constructive, they do it in such a way that we want to follow their lead.”
“It has been a fun journey working with Joy’s House as they have continued to grow to what they are today. We have been able to provide them with assistance and guidance in the more complex accounting issues that have come with this growth, allowing them to focus on what they do best: serving their Guests” says Jason Clagg, Senior Audit Manager.
Looking forward, McIntosh expresses hope that Joy’s House can continue to meet the needs of the community around Indianapolis, and possibly further. As the word “caregiver” continues to evolve and hold meaning in new and different ways, Joy’s House will be there to help care for families as they care for each other. Caring in this way can be financially, physically and emotionally exhausting, as well as one of the best things that a person can do in her life. One simply has to have a place to go to find community, resources, and support. Joy’s House has become that place for thousands of family caregivers.
“Tina and her staff always put the Guests first. Protection of each Guest’s dignity and a genuine caring attitude is always present. The Joy’s House model cannot be easily duplicated, as it is totally dependent on individual care and attention,” says Jeff Kimmerling, Director. “The world could be a better place if everyone had the purpose and dedication of the Joy’s House staff.”
“When people who don’t know us think about aging adults and those living with diagnoses, they often think that we are sad and lonely and waiting to die. At Joy’s House, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Let’s be honest – sometimes we’re sad or lonely. Who isn’t? But, we are a community together. We laugh together. And make memories together. And we are beautiful. Absolutely beautiful,” says McIntosh. “It’s been an honor to serve for the last 18 years and we look forward to seeing what the future holds and how we can further serve our community.”