"(AgeSong offers) what we all hope for in eldercare services. This safe and beautiful environment, with
character and warmth creates a community that feels like home."
— Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House
"It has been a great experience working with Pacific Institute and AgeSong. I have come to trust the
healing that this work involves. Above all else, I know how deeply grateful the residents are to have
AgeSong’s staff in their lives. My work here has made that very clear."
"The entire staff is so welcoming! In addition to taking good care of dad, they make everyone feel very
much at home."
My father, Dr. Allan Edelson, has been a resident at Agesong in Hayes Valley since July 2010. I am interested in writing statement about the quality of care he receives because, as a clinical psychologist myself, and also because my dad has now lived in three different assisted living facilities, I recognize how unusual it is for a facility to be so incredibly attuned to their residents' needs.
We have been blown away by the quality of care that my father has received at Agesong. I should start by saying that, when I was first researching assisted living facilities in the Bay Area, I was a little skeptical after learning that there are several Agesong facilities. I was concerned that it might be not individualized treatment. I was very wrong. My dad has been happier at the Hayes Valley Care facility than he has at any other facility he has lives at; and, frankly, happier than he has been in about 5 years. The funny thing about dementia is that general quality of life can have dramatic effects on symptomatology; before coming to Agesong, my dad was on daily medicine because of relatively frequent aggressive outbursts due to his disease. Currently, he has been off that medicine for several months, as the aggression has, for the most part, dissipated.
The staff at Agesong are caring, mellow, and involved. They all know and love "Dr. Allan" and it is lovely to see how excited he is to see them when we come back from an excursion. The treatment is very individualized and very positive, rather than being punitive or cookie-cutter. Rather than seeing my father as "a man with Alzheimers," they choose to see him as a funny, loving, and intelligent guy who loves music and chocolate. The activities that the residents take part in are fun and challenging, and they have interns who are involved in the patient care. One of the most important aspects to their care model is its flexibility; rather than requiring their residents to adhere to their schedule and their model, they adapt quickly to the intricacies and particularities or each resident, which, for someone with memory problems, is incredibly important and reassuring.
We have had good experiences with staff, who do their best to respond quickly and reasonably to any concerns or questions we have. The Hayes Valley facility is in a fun neighborhood, which makes it easy for me to come and take dad out to lunch or dinner on a regular basis.
All in all, we find Hayes Valley Care to be an exceptional assisted living facility. Have toured most of the facilities in the Bay Area (and having removed my father from 2 due to not being happy with the quality of care) it is such a relief to find one that we like so much. I highly recommend this facility, and am so happy to have found it.
— Naomi Edelson, Psy.D., Family Member
"The entire staff is so welcoming! In addition to taking good care of dad, they make everyone feel very much at home."
— Family Member
"I want to also thank you for the excellent care you have provided (and continue to provide) my friend, as well as the other residents at AgeSong. I can highly recommend AgeSong to everyone based upon the excellent care I have observed and from the personal experiences of my friend. Thank you. You have wonderful staff and provide exemplary care and assistance for some very difficult seniors and others with disabilities."
— Hadley, Friend of Resident
"On behalf of our family, I wanted to thank you and your staff, especially Art Therapist Constance Hunt, for the wonderful art reception that you held for my father. It was a truly remarkable experience for all of us. My siblings, family and everyone who love my father were just so excited and happy for him – and dad had a wonderful time, needless to say!” .
— Family Member
"I wanted to tell you how grateful we, the JFKU team, and our guests from Japan, were to be able to visit your beautiful facilities and to have such an inspiring presentation. Our guests have visited many other senior care facilities in U.S. in the past, but they were very impressed by your unique approach in the elderly care field, with deep psychological understanding of the elders and also of our modern society in general.
"I appreciate so much what you did for my mom and me. I saw her today, and I am convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that she is safe, content, and feels valued."
— Regina, Family Member
"We have thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Age Song, and most of all, the caregivers and staff. You have provided such a warm and loving environment for my mother and family. We feel very fortunate to be a part of the Age Song family."
"We love what you are doing for our elders; they have given so much, and it's heartwarming to know there is a place where care and love can show them appreciation, and that life is not over 'til our last breath."
— Nora, AgeSong Supporter
"We wanted to thank you and everyone at Hayes Valley so much for the beautiful memorial service that you did for Maria Clara on January 12. It was very meaningful to us that Maria Clara was honored in this way by those with whom she spent the last year of her life. As difficult as things were for Maria Clara over the past year, I think she always felt well cared for and loved by her "family" at Hayes Valley. Since we weren't able to have the funeral service until February 3 (because of family schedules), it was particularly healing to share the memorial service with all of you in January. We very much liked hearing Heather's memories of Maria Clara and the Auden poem that you read.
I hope that Shelley and I can keep in touch with Hayes Valley/Laguna Grove. You all do very good work."
— Lewis, Family Member
"I cannot begin to say enough good things about Hayes Valley Care and all the associates working there. My sister has lived there for about 6 years and she has grown to think of everyone there as part of her extended family. She has enjoyed the family atmosphere, activities, outings, and care she experiences at Hayes Valley Care. It gives me great comfort and peace of mind knowing she is happy and taken care of so well. Thank you Hayes Valley Care!"
— Pam, Family Member
"AgeSong is cutting-edge compassion to assisted living care from an inflexible institutional practice of yesteryear."
— Ross Mirkarimi, San Francisco District Supervisor
"Zen Hospice can never offer enough thanks to Hayes Valley Care. The service and assistance given was beyond the call of duty, and will be remembered, always."
— Redwing Keyssar, Director of Clinical Services, Zen Hospice Project
"I want to express our deepest gratitude to you and the Hayes Valley Care staff for your supportive care and concern... a large part of that has to do with the love and generosity of your caregivers... our resident is very blessed to have you all!"
— Travis, Marchi & Smith, Conservatorships & Care Management
"Vibrant, true to San Francisco fashion...with an emphasis on artwork. The staff pays close attention to the mental and physical health of the residents."
— From The Gilbert Guide's official review of the Hayes Valley Care Facility
"You obviously have created a place of healing and support for the aging... I admire your family's interest and attention to personal and physical details throughout."
— Brooke, The HOK Planning group, Landscape Architecture
& Urban Design
"Dear Elke, I just wanted to drop you a note to thank you and your family and all the staff at Hayes Valley, for making my Mom feel welcome and safe! She seemed so much more relaxed and cognizant as soon as she arrived! Your Mother is an absolute angel! The way she talks and acts towards the residents, shows she cares so much. Anyway, thank you so much for letting my Mom stay at your facility. We feel very lucky to have found such a staff and place of joy! I'm much more confident that we made the right decision moving her there. Thanks doesn't seem to express the happiness we feel."
— Dave, Family Member
"We can't thank you enough for all of your kindness and support. Knowing Aunt Pearl was in such good hands meant a lot. We really appreciate your sitting with her that last night. We were so fortunate to have found you all.
We can't thank you enough for everything you and your associates did for our aunt, Pearl Leeches. We were truly fortunate to have walked through your doors."
— Karen and Elva, Family Members
"We were completely awestruck with AgeSong and the inspired tour you presented to Walter and me. You will be hearing from us."
— Polly and Walter, AgeSong Supporters
"Kate, I just wanted to thank you and your cohorts for coming in and singing. Could you pass this message of thanks along to them? Your efforts really liven up the residents. I know it doesn't really always show, but your group has a wonderfully positive impact on our residents. Jim wanted to tell your group last time you came that the smile on one of your member's faces was "worth waiting for." I wanted to tell you this two weeks ago, but all of you were in the middle of singing at the time.
I can't go into each resident's specifics because of privacy issues, but know that especially those that fall asleep often do so because your voices have soothed them. Many of them suffer from moderate to severe chronic pain, and spend most of their waking hours in search of a salve. So you should know that sleeping is often a very positive indication of the relief from their suffering.
Many of our residents also suffer from dementia, and have difficulty forming new memories. So to see their eyes light up and to have them sing a song they can remember is a wonderful feeling for all of us. Many of them recognize that their memories are going, so the return of these melodies gives their moods a welcome morale boost.
Our function as a hospice is to provide human companionship and relieve the suffering of these residents during the last moments of their lives. But isn't it wonderful that at the very end, when they would otherwise be alone, that they have a merry band of singers to celebrate the depth and breadth of their lives?
Thank you all so much for your lively blessings, and we look forward to each and every visit."
— Mike, Zen Hospice Volunteer
"Dear Amir, thank you, your family, and your staff for all you have done to make my mother's last years pleasant. She was protected, loved, and respected. There is no question that she lived longer, and in comfort, because her home was at Hayes Valley Care.
Thank you, your family, and the staff at Hayes Valley Care for the beautiful memorial service. It meant so much to mother's family to have her life beautifully celebrated as it was.
At the service when you announced that the rotunda would be named the Vivian Goddard Rotunda, her family gasped. It is such an incredible thing to do. Your announcement deeply affects each one of us. Our appreciation knows no bounds.
With gratitude and affection,"
— Joan, Family Member
"I want to extend my gratitude to you for all the help and expertise you offered me regarding George's care. We brought George home, the place he really wanted to be, surrounded by his loved ones. He passed away on Mon., Jan. 30th; he gave me the great privilege of being with his last breath. Blessed be! Thank you Elke; you were present for us in a desperate time.
— Betzy, Family Member
"Dear Mrs. Tekin, I was in SF in February visiting senior community facilities for my father. We "met" outside the locked door and then I was welcomed and given a tour of your exceptional establishment. When we spoke on the phone prior to my visit, you said something to the effect of "Come and see how it feels." After visiting 22 assisted living and nursing home facilities, I can definitively say that AgeSong was the most peaceful, positive, and serene of them all! It was a pleasure to tour the buildings and meet some residents. I can only hope that should I myself need care when the time comes, that such a wonderful environment will be there for my late years. My sister and I decided to place my father in San Rafael, as he has a very close friend there who visits most every day.
I am writing to say thank you for the work that you do. AgeSong stands alone in what is sometimes a very bleak alternative. Thank you for your time and the tour."
— Leslie, AgeSong Supporter
"Dear Elke, your hospitality allowed us to view your two excellent facilities. We were very impressed with the accommodations and ambiance, especially the warm feeling we observed among the residents themselves. Thank you for the tour and the delightful delicious food and drink you hosted in the restaurant. We shall, indeed, recommend your facilities when and if someone needs such care.
It was generous of you and your brother to have provided your time for our group. We felt the warm rapport was beneficial to all."
— Norma, President, NorCal Armenian Home & Senior Services