Home Instead Senior Care® of Denver South has played a major role in the short-term and distant goals of CAREGiver of the Month Fanny Mukendi.“I am attending the Community College of Aurora, and I am studying to become a nurse. My goals are to maybe open my own clinic back home or a nursing home,” said Fanny, a native of the Democratic Republic of Congo who joined owner Bill Dahlquist’s award-winning franchise Oct. 29, 2014. “Working at Home Instead Senior Care helps me put my hand on a lot of different challenges, and the training helps a lot. The staff assists with the challenges, and I love the way they always provide full support for us CAREGivers.”Fanny got her start in senior care at age 10 in her home country out of necessity when she became a family caregiver for her grandmother. Her grandmother, an amputee, had diabetes and need help with her medicine and checking her blood sugar levels when she was not feeling well. “I was fairly young at that time, but everything started for me at that moment, when she got sick. Just like every dreamer, I said I was going to be a doctor. When I moved here 11 years ago, I started learning more about my many options to help others,” said Fanny, whose grandmother passed away at age 74, five years after Fanny moved to Aurora.Fanny learned about Home Instead Senior Care at a job fair at her college. “I loved it when Home Instead Senior Care recruiters explained I could make my own schedule to fit my needs because I am a college student. It was a fine deal,” Fanny said. “What I like most about my job is the feeling of knowing I’m bringing a little help to the family to give them a break. It feels good to keep our clients safe. I have worked with dementia clients, and many of the challenges of a client with dementia are family-related. Not surprisingly, many still are at the denial stage of their senior loved ones’ decline.” CAREGivers such as Fanny are among the reasons Home Instead Senior Care of Denver South is a highly acclaimed in-home senior-care franchise. Fanny and other CAREGivers have completed the Home Instead Senior Care network’s Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias CARE: Changing Aging Through Research and Education® Training Program. CAREGivers who are trained in the CARE program have a passion to work with Alzheimer’s clients and receive ongoing training and testing to enhance their already outstanding care techniques. The Home Instead program offers a personal approach to taking care of seniors with Alzheimer’s disease at home – where 60 to 70 percent live, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. It is a unique program that has received acclaim and endorsements from experts. CAREGivers can provide assistance with establishing a regular routine and restoring the simple pleasures of life, among the best non-medical treatments for the disease. Helping seniors, Fanny said, has generated many favorite client memories. “My best thoughts center around the feeling of clients who trust me like a family, even to the point I don’t feel I can take a vacation,” Fanny said. “When I do take a vacation, one client told me the next time I go on vacation, I must take her with me. It takes me back to reflecting how my relationship with the client has changed so much for the better when I consider the client did not like me when I first came to assist her.”In some ways, Fanny said, there is a spiritual nature to what she does. “To elaborate,” Fanny said, “I will say faith comes into play for me in bolstering myself with more patience, determination, hopefulness and open-mindedness. And for me, faith is more about my client trusting and believing in me.” She added: “For me, if my clients are of the Christian faith, I will learn about their specific beliefs. If they ask, I will pray with them. If they are Muslim, I will learn the basics so I can understand and make my clients comfortable and happy. No matter what faith they hold, or if they have no faith at all, I treat them like family.”
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