​​A family-focused long-term care residence

Granite House

Granite House

Granite House

Granite House

Aaron on the trail to Granite Peak, 2007. Mystic Lake in background.


HOW GRANITE HOUSE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE:
Granite House was started not just to serve the needs of a small number of individuals and families, but also to connect with people across the nation and to inspire others to provide similar specialized housing.  Our support group is already connecting with local families in St. Paul, and later, also at Granite House. An online support group will grow as we reach out to families across the country. As caregivers and providers see what we are doing, we hope that they will be encouraged to create their own specialized care settings for these individuals.


For more information about
our support network

ADVOCATE

EDUCATE

INFORM

Why it is so important for Granite House to inform, educate and advocate
By Carol and Tom Insley, founders of Granite house and parents of a son in a minimally conscious state after brain injury


  • INFORM:  We are the parents of an adult son who sustained a severe and permanent brain injury in a car accident in 2007. After surviving the coma, the vegetative state, and still not completely emerging into full consciousness, he was admitted to a long-term care facility at the age of 22. Aaron is among the small percentage—1 percent—of brain injury victims who have survived such a severe injury. He is not alone. Thanks to modern medicine, in this country, more than 100,000 people are living in a minimally conscious state. They are living long lives, and the lucky ones, like Aaron, are able to come home to live with their families in a home modified for a wheelchair and equipped with good care. Many are not this fortunate. They are housed in inappropriate settings, such as long-term facilities or group homes that cater to sick and aging populations.
  • EDUCATE: Although there is widespread support and awareness of traumatic brain injury, many people do not know that these survivors exist. Recent media coverage of our returning veterans who have sustained severe brain injuries has been the beginning of such an awareness in the greater community. However, because of their small numbers and their relatively young age, they are falling through the cracks in the system. The rehabilitation programs and housing options designed to support people living with brain injury are not addressing their needs. People with severe and permanent brain injuries need 24 hour care with maximum assistance. They are unable to call out, push a button, or otherwise let someone know they are in need of care. Their needs are not being served in our community, or in the greater reaches of our state and nation. They are just too young to be facing decades in a nursing home.
  • ADVOCATE:  In addition to more of these people surviving, the reality is that this group is increasing by thousands each year, and there is a lack of facilities that can appropriately meet their needs. In spite of all of the deficits, people in a minimally conscious state are still responsive. The research supports families who report them smiling, laughing, and even doing a thumbs-up. They will make eye contact, move their head to follow an object, respond to voices and songs, and can often repeat syllables or hum to a beat. Parents who take care of an adult child will say they know that he or she is “in there” and are able to connect with them. These individuals need to be supported with appropriate sensory stimulation and also given quiet time for their brains to rest.                                                                                                                                                                                ​