During the last 40 years, demographics, lifestyles and the healthcare system have evolved and our organization has evolved with those changes. Keiro means “respect for our elders.” Our name both honors our past and welcomes people outside the Japanese community. Over the years, our goal has remained the same: To provide elderly persons on a nonprofit basis with housing facilities and services, specially designed to meet the physical, social and psychological needs of the aged, and contribute to their health, security, happiness, and usefulness in longer living. We do it through our mission of Making Every Day the Best Day for our residents, families, and the entire community.
In the early 1970s, aging Issei (first generation Japanese-Americans) had nowhere to go to receive culturally sensitive nursing care. In response to this need, seven Nisei (second generation) mobilized the Japanese community to develop a nursing home to meet the cultural, social, language and dietary needs of elderly Nikkei. In 1975, these visionaries created Issei Concerns, later known as Nikkei Concerns, and today is now known as Keiro Northwest.
An Array of Services
After a concerted fund development campaign, a skilled nursing facility opened its doors in South Seattle in 1976. By the end of the first year of operation, the facility was filled to near capacity, and demand was growing. Residents were receiving excellent care, and their lives were extending beyond expectation.
In the spring of 1985, Keiro Northwest embarked on its second major fundraising effort for a new $6.6 million, 150-bed facility. On May 6, 1986, the Keiro Rehabilitation and Care Center broke ground at 16th Avenue and Yesler Way. Over the years, Keiro Northwest developed Home Care, Catering, Kokoro Kai Adult Day program, Nikkei Horizons continuing education and Transportation services.
In 1995, Keiro Northwest embarked on another major campaign for the construction of a 50-unit assisted living facility for elders who did not require skilled nursing care, but could benefit from assistance with daily tasks. In 1998, Nikkei Manor opened its doors, located in the heart of Seattle’s International District.
In 2019, our not-for-profit organization responded to the growing challenges in the skilled nursing industry by closing the Keiro Rehabilitation and Care Center, as well as our community programs. We consolidated our services to direct all of our attention and resources to the assisted living community and the adult day program, both of specific value to our residents and aging members of our surrounding community.
Today, Nikkei Manor, our assisted living facility, continues to provide a warm and caring environment for our wonderful residents. With outstanding Japanese food served daily, enrichment activities to engage the hearts and minds, and a strong team of nurturing care staff, our residents enjoy a high quality of life in Seattle. In addition, our Kokoro Kai adult day program opens Nikkei Manor to the community so that elders living at home can enjoy a day program of lively activities, intergenerational programming, outing to local events, and a meal with familiar faces.