Friendship Haven dares to imagine

When you cease to dream, you cease to live. Nowhere are dreams more vibrant – and life more full of faith, passion and purpose – than at Friendship Haven.

I’ve witnessed this firsthand as generations of my family have called Friendship Haven home, including my mother, Lillian, and my Aunt Josephine and Uncle George. I describe their caregivers as “angels,” because these dedicated people make Friendship Haven exceptional.

That’s why I’m proud to support the $3.5 million capital campaign to enhance this tradition of excellence and keep Friendship Haven at the forefront of retirement community living in Iowa. While you’ve probably seen the construction that’s transforming Friendship Haven’s campus, the capital campaign is so much more than buildings.

When Dr. Clarence Tompkins founded Friendship Haven more than 60 years ago, he urged people to “make no little dreams.” Big dreams define the capital campaign, which will allow Friendship Haven to:

Better serve our friends and neighbors. From the beginning, Friendship Haven has been a not-for-profit local organization that supports the local community. Today, Friendship Haven is home to 350 people and serves many people off-campus, as well. Services include independent living, assisted living, skilled care, Catalyst Rehabilitation, Generations Adult Day Services, a state-of-the-art Wellness Center, and more.

Offer peace of mind through charitable care. As part of its mission, Friendship Haven provides nearly $600,000 of charitable care each year. From the day Friendship Haven opened in 1950, no one has ever been asked to move because they exhausted their resources. This charitable care has offered generations of people tremendous peace of mind.

Drive local economic development. With 350 team members, Friendship Haven is one of the area’s largest employers, generating a major economic impact that ripples throughout the community.

All these efforts are strengthened by Friendship Haven’s tremendous senior leadership team, headed up by Julie Thorson, CEO. These talented leaders share a passion for the organization and strive to make Friendship Haven the best it can be.

Through the years, Friendship Haven has been blessed by generous donors who provide ongoing support. You can contribute to this success as a partner in Friendship Haven’s capital campaign. For more information, contact me or any capital campaign committee member, including Julie Thorson, Phil Gunderson, Bruce Vandagriff, Jim Patton, Kirk Yung, Steve Hendricks, Bev Baedke, Joe Jerome, Linda Lauver or Jennifer Crimmins. You can also reach

Chad Hammar, Friendship Haven’s development coordinator, at 573-6705, or

We are so close to fulfilling the dream of Dr. Tompkins and Friendship Haven’s founders. Thank you for your willingness to help us invest in the future.

Bruce Shimkat is chairman of the board of directors of Friendship Haven Inc.