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Van Wyk donates $2,600 to Almost Home during Christmas season
biz slt almost home
Van Wyk Inc. donates $2,600 to Almost Home Inc., a residential-care home at 1919 Van Buren. From left to right are: David Roat, Van Wyk terminal manager; Leilani Schenkel, RN, BSN, Almost Home executive director; Debbie Bowman, RN; and Lois Stafford, RN, BSN. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

                The more David Roat learned about Almost Home Inc., the more he knew it was the right fit for his employer’s Christmas-time donation.

            Roat is terminal manager for Van Wyk Inc., an over-the-road trucking company with an office on South U.S. 281 in Great Bend. The home office is in Sheldon, Iowa, and another office is located in Waynesboro, Va.

            “When I was trying to decide where the local donation should go, I started doing a little research by talking with friends and colleagues,” Roat said. “I then looked at Almost Home’s website and the more I read about its operations, the more right it felt.”

            Almost Home is a residential-care facility at 1919 Van Buren. It is a non-profit venture that provides health care and personal care in a home-like environment.

            In addition to full-time residential and hospice care, Almost Home services include adult daycare and respite care for families. It is staffed 24 hours a day with licensed and certified personnel.

            “Almost Home is a unique facility and I was impressed when I took a tour,” Roat commented. “It was like walking into someone’s home, instead of an institutional setting.

            “When I met the staff, I could just see the compassion they have for the residents,” he added. “I also am impressed they offer services to hospice patients and their families. This kind of tugs at your heart, especially around Christmas.”

            Most residents of Almost Home are elderly people who “have spent their years caring for others. It is nice to do the same for them; it is their turn,” Roat said.

            Van Wyk is a family-run business that likes to give back to its communities, Roat said. It employs about 250 people.

            The Van Wyk family leaves it up to each of its terminal managers in the three locations to choose local worthy causes. Companywide, $8,200 was collected.

            “Roughly 75 percent of this came from over-the-road truckers,” Roat said. “These are generous professionals who care about their communities.”

            The $8,200 was divvied up, according to each location’s size and number of employees. “I hope other businesses and individuals will consider Almost Home when they are looking for a worthy place for their charitable contributions,” Roat commented.

            Leilani Schenkel, RN, Almost Home executive director, said the generous Van Wyk donation is earmarked for the hospice-care account.

            “This account was started with a donation from the Tim Miller family and has continued to grow with other donations and memorials,” Schenkel said. “It is used to help those who may not be able to pay for Almost Home’s hospice services.

            “I cannot tell you how much we appreciate the kindness and generosity that Van Wyk employees have extended,” she continued. “Their generosity will definitely bless someone in need.”

            Donations can be made at the Almost Home website, or by calling Schenkel at 620-617-1634.