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|Articles - July 2010|
|Thursday, June 24, 2010|
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Romanians dominate the adult foster home market by showing how to replace overpriced, impersonal care with the homey and affordable.
STORY BY LINDA BAKER // PHOTOS BY LISA BAUSO
Dorina Crainic, owner of Dorina’s Adult Care Home in Portland, walks into a bedroom, where an elderly man is trying to put on his shoes.
“How are you, papa?” Crainic asks, wiping saliva from the man’s chin. Battling a urinary tract infection and encumbered by a feeding tube, the man was up much of the night coughing and choking. The evening before, Crainic spent several hours attending to another resident, a woman suffering from dementia.
“There is always something coming up,” she says.
Running an adult foster home, a private residence licensed to provide care for up to five dependent seniors, is physically and psychologically demanding. But the 48-year old Crainic, soft spoken and articulate, isn’t complaining. In 1992, the former electrical engineer emigrated from Romania where she and her husband faced religious persecution under the notoriously hard-line communist regime of Nicolae Ceausescu. After working in another foster home for several years the couple bought their current residence where they care for clients on the first floor and raise two children on the second.
“I’m very happy, very thankful, “ says Crainic. “This is a very good business for us.”
On the surface, Crainic’s story is a familiar one: Hard-working immigrants build a successful new life in the United States. But Crainic’s story also spotlights a lesser-known tale about Romanians and how they have cornered the market on adult family homes in the Portland metropolitan area.
Some 85% of the 900 adult foster homes in metropolitan Portland are owned by first- and second-generation Romanians. “They dominate the industry here,” says Grover Simmons, a lobbyist for the Independent Adult Foster Home Association of Oregon.
The story of how Romanians came to control this niche is simple on the surface. But it also underscores the importance of traditional values such as thrift and diligence as the nation and Oregon grapple with the complexities and expenses of health care reform. More specifically, as the state’s elder population soars, the Romanian foster-care model offers a compelling example of creative adaptation. Oregon is “at the forefront” of a larger effort to provide more cost-effective, less institutional alternatives to nursing homes, says Sylvia Reiger, policy analyst for the Oregon Department of Seniors and People with Disabilities. Combining Old World values with New World marketing savvy, Romanians are at the cutting edge of modern-day health reform trends by showing how to replace overpriced, impersonal care with the homey and affordable.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN
As the recession recedes and tourism grows, Central Oregon resorts redefine themselves for a new generation.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY CHRIS NOBLE
The right sunglasses can protect your eyes and look cool at the same time. This being the 21st century, select shades are socially conscious, too. Portland brand Shwood uses wood and other natural materials and manufactures locally. Founded by Ann Sacks, the brand Fetch dedicates a portion of its profits to animal welfare. But whether you choose classic tortiseshell or aviator chic, please, shed the sunglasses when you walk in the door — and, of course, at night.
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
BY JASON E. KAPLAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
New Jersey and Oregon are the only two states in the U.S. that ban self serve gas stations. But these two holdouts may be ready to give up the game. New Jersey is considering legislation that would lift the state's ban on pumping your own gas. Oregon is considering smaller scale changes.
Friday, May 22, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR
The recent tragedy in Philadelphia has called attention to Amtrak and the nation's woefully underfunded rail service. Here are six facts about the Amtrak Cascades corridor between Eugene and Vancouver B.C.
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
One year after he was appointed chair of the Portland Development Commission, Tom Kelly talks about PDC's longevity, Neil Kelly's comeback and his new role as Portlandia's landlord.
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER
Spring rains are the bane of an Oregon cherry farmer’s existence. Even a few sprinkles can crack the fruit so badly it’s not worth picking. Science to the rescue: Researchers at Oregon State University have developed a spray-on film that cuts rain-related cracking in half, potentially saving a season’s crop. The coating, patented as SureSeal, is made from natural chemicals similar to those found in the skins of cherries: cellulose, palm oil-based wax and calcium.
Friday, May 08, 2015
BY CHRIS NOBLE | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN
Hagfish may not have evolved much over the last 300 million years, but their protein-heavy slime promises advances in super-materials.
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