Porchlight VNA moves Lee home care office to Pittsfield


PITTSFIELD >> Two years after merging with a similar organization in Chicopee, Porchlight/VNA Home Care is taking additional steps toward its goal of serving all of the Berkshires.

The agency is moving its home care office in Lee to a new branch office at 306 South St. (Route 7) in Pittsfield. The office officially will open on April 1, two years to the day that Porchlight merged with Chicopee VNA.

"April 1 is a lucky day for us," said Porchlight CEO Holly Chaffee referring to a day that is normally associated with frivolity. "We had the merger, we open our new office. That seems to be the trend."

Porchlight's corporate office will remain at its current location in Lee, Chaffee said, although the organization will be able to perform all its current services at both of its Berkshire County outlets. Porchlight also has an office in Chicopee. Porchlight has a two-year lease that includes three additional two-year extensions on the Pittsfield office.

Since the merger with Chicopee VNA, Porchlight has provided services to 35 communities in Berkshire County and in the hilltowns of Hampden and Hampshire counties. Founded in 1912, Porchlight was originally known as Lee VNA.

"We're trying to have more a presence in Pittsfield and in the Berkshire County area," Chaffee said, referring to Porchlight's new Pittsfield location. "We serve Berkshire, but for some reason people still associate us with South County.

"Having an office in Pittsfield gives us the visibility that we need for people who drive back and forth, and say, 'Oh yeah, Porchlight's a five-star agency we can go there for quality care,' " she said. "It gives us the ability to let people know that we're here."

The new office will have 15 staffers, and serve as a convenient drop off point for Porchlight employees who need to pick up supplies and materials or complete paperwork.

"All of our executives will float between the three offices depending on where they're needed," Chaffee said. "It's also a place for visiting nurses to stop in, take a break and catch up on computer work."

Porchlight currently has 413 employees, many of whom work out in the field.

"With technology, everybody doesn't have to go to the office," Chaffee said.

Formerly home to a financial services firm, Porchlight's new office is located next door to Berkshire Place's $10 million, 54-bed facility at 290 South St., which opened on the site of the former St. Theresa's Church in November 2014.

"It wasn't necessarily done by design," said Chaffee. "But we do have a good relationship with Berkshire Place."

Contact Tony Dobrowolski at 413-496-6224.


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