Willson House, A Culture of Caring — A Century of Trust
It all began in 1909 when a group of women from the Methodist Episcopal Church decided to develop and manage a retirement home for seniors who were without funds or family support. These women felt that those who had reached an older age and paid their dues to society deserved the opportunity to receive compassionate care in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Somewhere they could live their remaining years in comfort and dignity.
A House donated to the Methodist-Episcopal Church by Mr. and Mrs. W.B. Ware enabled the women to begin the development of their vision. Located on 12th and Ferry Streets in Salem, Oregon, the donated building was in much need of repair. Most of the work was done by the women themselves! Bit by bit they collected furniture, food and necessities for the Home. With accommodations for 19 people, the home filled immediately after opening. Soon a second home needed to be purchased to fill a growing need. By 1922, it was obvious that a new site, with more room was sorely needed. A challenge grant issued by Eastern Oregon rancher William W. Brown, enabled the women to raise enough money to build a new home in 1923, located on Center Street.
Willson House has earned and enjoyed a reputation throughout its existence for providing high quality, innovative housing and services to the elderly.
A Commitment to Excellence — An Expression of Faith
Open to all faiths, Willson House is committed to providing a life-affirming community, through end of life, by providing high-quality and affordable housing and support services in an atmosphere where residents, children and staff become an extension of family, and each person’s dignity, worth and choice are respected.
- Life is precious and has meaning in all of its stages.
- Our core values and beliefs of honesty, integrity, respect, dignity, and clear, open communication, apply equally to all.
- We hold ourselves individually accountable to meet high standards in all endeavors.
- We provide superior programs, facilities, and services at a reasonable cost.
Along with Willson House Residential Care (assisted living), our campus also includes Jason Lee Manor (HUD Section 8 rental assistance program), and the Willson House Child Development Center.
Willson House Residential Care – Assisted Living
Willson House Residential Care Facility has 50 apartments which are licensed by the State of Oregon's Senior and Disabled Services Division. Similar to assisted living facilities, Willson House serves seniors who may need more assistance in their daily living activities. Staff provide residents the support services necessary for them to remain as independent as possible. Winners of a national award for innovative housing programs, and a state-wide award for dining services, Willson House embraces the "Aging in Place" philosophy which allows residents to receive services without having to relocate to a more expensive care center. Learn more about Willson House Residential Care.
Jason Lee Manor – Independent Senior Living
Jason Lee Manor is a non-profit 75 unit retirement facility which offers the U.S. Department of Housing & Development (HUD) Section 8 Rental Assistance Program. Utilities, personal care, housekeeping, and medical care, and are not included. Eligibility requirements regarding age, yearly income, and more must be met. A resident services coordinator helps residents maintain their independence by coordinating available community services. The UMRC sponsors a subsidized meal program, and limited emergency services for residents of Jason Lee Manor. Activities at Willson House and the Child Development Center are open to Jason Lee Manor residents. Learn more about Jason Lee Manor.
Willson House Child Development Center — Generation to Generation
The Willson House Child Development Center is licensed for up to 34 children at any given time. Our on-site center provides supervised opportunities for seniors and children 2-8 years of age to read, visit, participate on field trips, and tell stories together. Our intergenerational program is one of the first of its kind in the state of Oregon and has been a place for generations to learn and grow together since 1985. Unique to our program is the opportunity for your child to build relationships with seniors as they engage in special daily activities. Studies have shown linking the wisdom and compassion of older persons with the energy and enthusiasm of children benefits both. Learn more about the Child Development Center.