Our History

A legacy of faith, inclusion and love for our neighbours

In 1945, five visionary Albertans had a vision to create a home for people who could not live on their own as a result of physical frailty, disability, chronic illness or family circumstance. Step by step and dollar by dollar, they rallied support to open their first caring community for 19 residents. They would be amazed today to see how their vision has grown – in 2016, that first residence has grown from a 4.75 acre site to care centres across central and southern Alberta.

How Our History
Has Unfolded:

1944 – Five founders, members of evangelical Lutheran congregations in Alberta, raise $10,000 to purchase the 4.75-acre Riley Estate (present site of Bethany Calgary)


1945 – Lutheran Welfare Society in Alberta incorporated


1946 – Bethany Home opened on Riley Estate, 19 guests; $300/month operating budget


1956 – Bethany Chronic Hospital, first in Alberta, 41 beds; $204,500 building/equipment cost


1975 – Name change Bethany Care Centre Calgary


1976 – Additions/renovations over time = 520 beds


1975 – Chaplaincy services initiated


1984 – Mission Statement adopted “In Christian love, to preserve and improve the quality of life of seniors and the disabled.”


1985 – Bethany Village opened


1987 – Bethany Airdrie opened


1988 – Bethany Cochrane opened


1992 – Name changed to Bethany Care Society, Mission revisited, Board and Corporate Services centralized


1997 – Wing Kei Villa opened at Bethany Calgary


1999 – Sundance on the Green opened, Riverview Village gifted to Bethany Care Society, Bethany Harvest Hills opened, first home-like care centre in Western Canada for residents experiencing the middle to late stages of dementia


2002 – Board develops Mission (Creating Caring Communities), Vision, Values, Bethany Care Foundation established


2004 – All Saints Chapel moved to Bethany Cochrane, Bethany CollegeSide opened, First care centre/college integration in Canada


2006 – Quality and Service Development Department established


2009 – Bethany CollegeSide Young Adult program expanded, Organization Effectiveness division established, Strategic plan approved; Mission, Vision, Values revisited


2010 – CollegeSide Gardens opened


2011 – Construction begins on Mikkelsen House at Riverview Village


2014 – Opening of Bethany Didsbury


2016 – Groundbreaking of Bethany Riverview