Chief Executive Officer
- Joseph R. Neri
Board of Directors
- Stephen C. Booth - Chairman
- Pauline Shaver - President
- David J. Shaver - Secretary
- Patrick Tesson - Treasurer
- Thomas Chittum
- Kim Goddard
- Frank Parker
The Angelus was founded in 1979 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Within a few short months, The Angelus became “home” for eight children, ranging in age from 2 to 12 years. The home was supported by State Funding, but the founders continued to work at night to supplement the income. The Angelus then became a non-profit organization so they could begin to accept charitable gifts. The community responded with financial as well as volunteer help.
By 1985, The Angelus had 14 children entrusted to their care and the home in St. Petersburg was bursting at the seams. A search for land began. Seventeen acres of beautiful wooded land was obtained in Pasco County which included a small two bedroom house. The first Angelus country home was completed in 1986 and in 1987 the second home was built by volunteers to accommodate all the children in St. Petersburg. Once reunited, The Angelus continued to grow. A swimming pool was donated by two concerned men in the community, another home was built by a handicapped friend in 1996 and Charlie’s Lodge was built in 1999 by 600 volunteers to honor our good friend, Charlie Daniels. Lastly, the pavilion was built in 2001 and is used by many groups in the community for social events as well as fund-raisers for The Angelus.
After nine years passed since The Angelus was founded, and the children have grown to adults, no longer able to go to school, the need for a day program became evident. With a donated portable classroom, The Angelus Day Program opened in 1988. Several adults in the community began attending daily classes from 9 to 3 each day, along with The Angelus adults. These folks are also in wheelchairs, living at home with their aging parents, traveling daily from surrounding communities. In one short year, the portable classroom became too crowded and once again, the Board of Directors formed a construction committee.
In July of 1990, a new 50 x 100 feet building was completed with the help of volunteer community labor. As many as 40 masons gathered and the walls went up in one day!! The Day Program expanded to include classes in computer skills, arts and crafts, miniature horse care, physical fitness, gardening, swimming and home economics.
A swimming pool was donated and this proved to be the best therapy for all. In 1996, the wood-shop was built with a Community Development Block Grant from Pasco County. Two vans were received from another CDBG making transportation feasible for the program attendees. In 2006, a generous benefactor built a twin 50 x 100 building to expand our services and make room for more. A multi-sensory room was added as well as a hot house for our gardening class. A large generator was donated and this building serves as a hurricane shelter. These additions allowed us to serve 50 handicapped people and the program is off and running.
The Angelus now has 5 group homes with 32 residents. The adult day program has grown with the capabilities of serving 50 persons. We have the space, the buildings, the personnel and the people needing total care. Our hands are tied by lack of funding. The State has imposed numerous budget cuts over the years making it impossible for us to provide all the services we are capable of.
Many people are waiting to be included in the government Medicaid Waiver system, but the wait is often 5 years long!! Presently, the funding provides 76% of our costs leaving the remaining 24% as donations, bequests and gifts from our friends. With the continued help of the community, the goals and philosophy of The Angelus will be maintained and the quality of life for the people who cannot help themselves will be assured.