Glenys Carl, as founder of Scott’s House and Coming Home Connection, is a tireless and selfless attendant and advocate for those who can’t tend to or advocate for themselves. She has received significant recognition over the past 20 years, including being awarded Santa Fe's Spirit of the Community Prize, honored as a Purpose Prize Fellow by Encore.org, being selected as on of New Mexico's most notable citizens by Money magazine, being chosen by the Manhattan Institute as on of 4 recipients of their annual Richard Cornuelle Award, received the Santa Fe Community Foundation's Piñon Award for Quiet Inspiration, and being choens as one of The New Mexican's 10 Who Made a Difference.
Carl has been providing care to others almost her entire life. Born in Wales during World War II, she spent most of her childhood years with her grandmother (whose husband returned from the trenches of World War I with what was then referred to as shell shock—the debilitating psychological condition that’s known today as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). “My grandmother used to take me around to care for people in England and Wales [where hospices, coincidentally, originated],” she recalls, whose father was away in the army at that time, while her mother had had to go to work in a parachute factory. “My grandmother didn’t get paid for it. She just did it.”
Aside from those trips with her grandmother, the other formative period in her life, probably the most formative, was the incapacitation and eventual death of her son Scott, for whom Scott’s House is named.
As she described it in her 2005 memoir, Hold My Hand, in 1987 Scott, who’d recently moved to Australia to attend college, suffered a traumatic head injury. Carl flew down to Australia immediately. When Scott emerged from a three-month-long coma, she organized volunteers to care for him because he was not covered by the Australian medical system. Following the death of Scott at age 25, Carl relocated to Santa Fe and got her first official hospice job working with people with AIDS at Trevor Hawkins’ Southwest Care Center. This is where the seeds for Coming Home Connection, and Scott’s House, first sprouted.
“I saw this lack of care for young AIDS patients who had no money and I remember thinking, what about people who can’t afford care? Medicare pays for hospice but not for home care.”
So she founded Coming Home Connection and Scott's House. Coming Home Connection trains, places and supports volunteer and professional caregivers in homes and other settings where help is needed, to assist clients and their families through sickness, old age and the end of life. Scott's House provides a free social model hospice residence for end of life and respite in Santa Fe, NM.
Glenys has two remaining sons, one a marine biologist in Denmark and the other a woodworker in Pecos. And she has many grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
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