The ELIZA JENNINGS SENIOR CARE NETWORK (formerly known as the Eliza Jennings home), opened in October 1888 as the Eliza Jennings Home for Incurables, is one of the oldest facilities for the care of the elderly in Cleveland. Originally it also served as a home for chronically ill patients. ELIZA JENNINGS decided to establish a home for indigent gentlewomen of any age in response to the plight of an impoverished, homeless elderly woman in her church. Jennings donated land on Detroit Road (now 10603 Detroit) and paid for the home's early facilities and operations. The Women's Christian Assn. and its successor, the YOUNG WOMEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSN. (YWCA), operated the home; WOMEN have always played a central role in the home's organization and management. Soon after its opening, the trustees decided to house only the elderly. Requisites for admittance were at least five years residence in Cleveland and testimonials of satisfactory character; women with mental problems or infectious diseases were not admitted.
In 1922 the Jennings Home formally separated from the YWCA and incorporated as a private, nonprofit organization under the leadership of Mrs. Charles Orr. With the aid of C. Perry Burgess, the home built a new facility (completed in 1925) on the old site, next to the CHILDREN'S AID SOCIETY. Since then, the Jennings Home has been enlarged by the Tomlinson Pavilion (1955) and the Laub Nursing Pavilion (1966), donated by Elsie Laub and Charles Morris. In the 1980s the home housed sixty residents of both sexes and offered a program for nonresidents to utilize its programs and medical facilities. A section of the home was equipped for full-time nursing care. Gifts, endowments, and membership fees supported these activities. In 2006 Eliza Jennings offered a variety of services at a variety of sites, including skilled nursing care, assisted living, independent living, as well as specialized memory support, and a variety of community-based services. The original Eliza Jennings site on Detroit Avenue and the Renaissance Health Center in Olmsted Township provided skilled nursing care to elderly individuals, as well as those requiring hospice care. Jennings Place at the Detroit Avenue property, Devon Oaks in Westlake, and the Carol B. Hall Center in Olmsted Township were home to people needing assisted living care. Also at that time Independent Living Centers were on-site at the Renaissance Health Center.
See also OLD AGE/NURSING HOMES.