One Client Was a 'Life Changer' for Berenger
Not long after a Home Instead Senior Care® client had celebrated his 100th birthday last July, the sharp Irishman turned to CAREGiver of the Month Berenger Azannayi and said, "Will you give me your blessing?"
Berenger was mystified but replied, "Yes, of course, my good friend. But why do you ask this?"
The client said, "It's my time to go. I want your blessing." Changing the subject, Berenger said, "I see many good days ahead." But a little more than two weeks later, the client went to the hospital and passed away. The client must have had a premonition, Berenger surmised.
Berenger, describing his eight months with the client, said: "This client changed my life. He was a remarkable man. He was so worried for me, asking me how I was doing. I treated him like my father. After a period of adjustment, he didn't want anyone outside of his family except me to help him. I still think of him. I had a very good relationship with him and his family."
Berenger had been assigned to the client about six weeks after he started in late October 2017 with owner Kelly Hutchison's award-winning Home Instead Senior Care® franchise in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. Berenger pointed out: "When you work with seniors, you learn new things. I like to learn, and your clients can teach you a lot. They are lovely."
Referring to his late client, Berenger said: "In the beginning, it wasn't easy. But he opened himself to me. When he felt comfortable with my help, he called his entire family and told them I am a good guy. When he died, I cried a lot. We need to help people like him."
Berenger's compassion for seniors had its genesis in his west African nation of Benin, where he cared for his father until Berenger left for the United States in 2008. As his father's diabetes grew worse, he began to have memory problems. "Although I don't think it was dementia, I learned from Dad's situation how to work with those who have dementia," Berenger said.
For a while, nobody other than Berenger was allowed to take care of his widowed father until Berenger received his dad's permission to allow a sister to do it. "Then I trained her how to help him. It is a cultural thing where he did not want his daughters to do it at first, especially with the personal care involved. Helping him was how I learned about personal care that includes showering, toileting and changing," recalled Berenger, whose father died four years ago.
After Berenger arrived in America, one of his friends suggested that Berenger try the same thing he'd done for his father. His friend told Berenger that in-home care agencies would train him to meet their standards. When Berenger was working for another agency, he lost his longtime client to a nursing home. Berenger was idle for a month while waiting for a new client.
"It was too long. I had to move on, and I am glad I found Home Instead. This is what I want to do," Berenger said. "I will stay with Home Instead. I can honestly tell you they are very nice. I learned about specific techniques from Home Instead."
Berenger had his first Home Instead client for one month after he left the hospital. But the client's condition improved so much that he didn't need any more help, and Home Instead assigned other clients. "Since I've had experience with dementia clients, the office often sends me to them," Berenger said.
He offered advice for prospective CAREGivers: "Know yourself well and be honest about your attributes. If you are not patient, you cannot do this job. Patience and love are bigger factors than having to pick up on each client's nuances. You can become acquainted with unique needs, but without love and patience, it is hard to help. I told the office: 'Send me anywhere. I can handle it.' I enjoy getting to know regular clients. For fill-in shifts, if they need me urgently, I will go."
All Home Instead Senior Care CAREGivers are screened, trained, bonded and insured. For inquiries about employment, please call [Phone] or apply online at https://www.homeinstead.com/205/home-care-jobs. For further information about Home Instead Senior Care, visit our website at https://www.homeinstead.com/205 .
Client Wanted CAREGiver Nam From the Start
"Can you stay?"
It was the client's question for CAREGiver of the Month Nam Yoo on March 20, 2018, during his first shift with the 75-year-old widower. Since then, Nam has been the designated live-in CAREGiver for the client, who contacted Home Instead Senior Care® of Elk Grove Village shortly after his wife of 49 years passed away.
"The client was depressed, and I could understand. He had lost his wife just two months before they would have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary," said Nam, a CAREGiver with Kelly Hutchison's award-winning Home Instead Senior Care franchise since Jan. 28, 2010. "I work on keeping a positive atmosphere with my clients. The client laughs easily with me, and we have a good time."
Nam's friends and acquaintances agree there's no doubt he has a cheerful personality: The native of Seoul, South Korea, is always upbeat, likes to have fun and laughs a lot. Nam also is a skilled CAREGiver who became a CNA in 2003. He has worked in a nursing home, a hospital and a group home for those with late-stage dementia and disabilities, and as an in-home provider. "My client knows I was in all those places and have a great deal of experience. I think it is a comfort to him," Nam said.
Because the client has mobility challenges and a chronic condition that must be monitored every four or five hours, Nam is the perfect match. The client's care includes medication reminders as well as meal preparation, in addition to Nam's companionship.
"The client is a unique person who had a 39-year career as a courageous first responder in a suburban community. He saw plenty of heartbreak, including the loss of a co-worker and friend, and he did everything he could to help others. It is time for someone to help him," Nam said.
The client's daughter, who is a high school teacher and has a family, likes Nam's meticulous care and his eagerness to transport her father to familiar activities so he can continue to enjoy his routines. She said, "Nam is getting him out. He was depressed."
Nam's client loves to watch his 10-year-old grandson play organized soccer and hockey games on the weekends. Traveling to some winter competitions can be challenging, but the client always wants to try. "I told him: 'My job is taking care of you and keeping you safe.' Sometimes it is very stressful. I ask, 'What will happen if I can't get around in the ice and cold?' " Nam said.
The client also likes to go to movies, restaurants, a racetrack and a casino, among other destinations. During horse-racing season, they usually go to the track twice a week. "He just likes to see all the action. Betting is secondary to him. He says, 'Let's go home' when he finishes his self-appointed allowance that is always a low dollar amount. There are usually 10 races, but we finish six or seven races and leave," Nam said.
Nam is preparing for the client's approaching challenge: a surgery aimed at improving his mobility. "He doesn't want to go to a rehabilitation facility – he's pretty firm on that. He wants to come home after the procedure and have me take care of him while an occupational therapist comes in three times a week," Nam said.
If all goes well with the procedure, the client's "wish" could come true and things could continue as they have. "Not everything will work out the way a client wants. I understand his character. He has a generous spirit and a good sense of humor. Like many clients, patience is needed. You don't rush him or say 'no' without a good explanation. Overall, I'd say there are no problems, and I like my job," Nam said.
Nam, who came to Chicago 25 years ago with his entire family, found Home Instead Senior Care in a newspaper advertisement while he was working for another agency. "With Home Instead Senior Care," he said, "I was guaranteed another client if I lost one. They usually find one in four to five days. I was impressed when I came in and met Angie and Kelly Hutchison. I like Home Instead. It is a very organized franchise office."
All Home Instead Senior Care CAREGivers are screened, trained, bonded and insured. For inquiries about employment, please call [Phone] or apply online at https://www.homeinstead.com/205/home-care-jobs. For further information about Home Instead Senior Care, visit our website at https://www.homeinstead.com/205.
Krystyna joined Home Instead Senior Care in February 2018 after she found the company in a newspaper advertisement. By joining Home Instead, Krystyna no longer had to seek out elderly clients as she did when she assisted seniors in private duty. Read More...
Asked what she likes best about her Home Instead Senior Care job, Grace said: “I get the chance to meet wonderful people. We had a 90th birthday party for my lady client, and her family came from different cities, including San Francisco. There are a lot of fantastic people with diverse family histories." Read more...
“I was raised to be altruistic, to always help people and make the world a better place. Home Instead provided an environment to do those things. I want to give back; I’m blessed with a job I enjoy. I was helping people – functionally and emotionally – in my former occupation,” Read more....
Melinda joined owner Kelly Hutchison’s award-winning Home Instead Senior Care® franchise in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, five years ago. The idea of senior care first sparked 16 years ago when Melinda was a hospital oncology patient care attendant while taking nursing classes. Read more...
Harriet joined Home Instead Senior Care in February 2008 after hearing about the franchise from a co-worker. “We were working for a home-health care company. I wanted to find another job at the time, and I am glad I found Home Instead Senior Care. They understand me and listen to me. The lines of communication are good,” she said. Read more...
Most important, the CAREGiver of the Month expresses compassion, empathy and a nurturing spirit, the most critical of all communication skills. In other words, Olga doesn’t have to say much to her clients in order for them to understand how she feels about them. Read more...
Connie, a CAREGiver of the Month who joined Home Instead Senior Care ® in Elk Grove Village in October 2016, said: “I still read the sign in my home every morning, and its message is good for CAREGivers and family caregivers.” Read more...
It came as no surprise when Kenyatta Sims was honored as the August CAREGiver of the Month by owner Kelly Hutchison’s award-winning Home Instead Senior Care ® franchise in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. Read More...
In September 2017, Renee joined owner Kelly Hutchison’s award-winning Home Instead Senior Care franchise in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. “I’ve loved every minute of it,” said Renee, who was honored as CAREGiver of the Month in August 2018. Read more...
Asked how she developed the heart of a CAREGiver, Rose pointed to an unforgettable period in her life when she was hospitalized at age 10 for rheumatic fever. “I went to a hospital March 5, 1968, and was moved to La Rabida Children’s Hospital for 3½ months. Read more...
pointed out that since she was a young child, she has loved being a caregiver.
“I was never a family caregiver with my grandparents, but our family always was
helping people. Professional senior care is a new avenue, although I had
volunteered at senior centers,” she said. Read more...
At Home Instead, I felt I could make a difference for someone, and perhaps
I could be assigned to help someone like my grandma. Of course, I count my
mother as a best friend, but both grandmothers were also best friends and
blessings to me,” Cassie added. Read more...
Carol-Anne married and moved after the 2½-year client-CAREGiver relationship,
both were sad. She remained in contact and visited her former client after she
was hospitalized. “She told me, ‘Carol-Anne, I don’t want you to go.’ I knew
her time was short, and I stayed as long as I could,” she recalled. Two years
ago, the 78-year-old former client passed away. “Clients and CAREGivers can
become so attached. I will always
remember her. I keep a picture of her in my room. She was one of a kind,” the
CAREGiver said, her voice tinged with emotion. Read more...
Suzy’s immigration from
her native Mongolia to America was truly an eventful chapter in her life. The
first leg of Suzy’s trip ended at the Beijing, China, airport, where she
scurried to find her flight to the United States. But that was Sept. 11, 2001,
in America, the infamous day of the commercial airline terrorist attacks in New
York City and Washington, D.C. When Suzy tried to board her plane, she was turned
away because air travel to the United States had been halted. Read more...
Maria’s heritage consists
of Native American roots, as well as blood lines that can be traced to people
from the Portuguese islands and the Celtics from the Iron Age Highlands of northern
Britain and Islands of Scotland. Her innate personality and passed-down family
knowledge and wisdom have meshed to create a compassionate and “can-do” person.
Maria has been called “a Renaissance Woman” by family members, friends and
acquaintances because she can repair just about anything, from a person’s
psyche to a car carburetor. Read more...
Please join us in congratulating Charlotte E. as our October 2016 CAREGiver of the Month. Charlotte is a live-in care giver. She has been with us for almost 2 years. Charlotte lives in Glendale Heights. She is from Ghana, Africa and she has seven siblings. Two of them live in the United States and the others still reside in Ghana.
Charlotte has had a passion for care giving since she was a young girl. She has always enjoyed caring for others. She was a care giver for several family members while growing up. Charlotte cared for her Grandmother when she became ill. Her grandmother always told her how much she appreciated the respect that she gave her. To Charlotte, the most important aspect of care giving is respect. She always looks forward to meeting new clients and taking care of any client that she is given.
Thank you for all you do! Congratulations, Charlotte!
Please join us in congratulating Ela K. as our November CAREGiver of the Month. Ela is an hourly care giver and has been with us for 1.5 years. She came to the United States from Poland 22 years ago with her husband and her son. Her son is 29 years old. Ela likes to travel back to Poland whenever she is able to. Ela has one sister and her sister is the inspiration for why she is now a care giver. Her sister took care of her mother who was very ill while Ela was in the United States.
Ela worked with a client privately until the client passed away. When her client passed away the client's family told Ela about Home Instead Senior Care. Ela lives in Bloomingdale. She enjoys taking care of seniors and likes to hear the stories that they have to share. Ela's favorite aspect of care giving is that she is able to give clients her undivided attention while she is with them. Thank you for all that you do! Congratulations, Ela!
Congratulations to our September 2016 CAREGiver of the month, Gregg W. Gregg is an hourly care giver. He has been with us for exactly one year this month! Gregg and his wife live in Roselle. He has three children and 5 grandchildren. Growing up Gregg's parents taught him what they considered two of the most valuable things, respect and kindness. Gregg heard about our company having care giving positions available and wanted to try something new. He enjoys meeting new clients and listening to all of the stories that they share with him. Thank you for all that you do!
Please join us in congratulating Mark C. as our CAREGiver of the month for August 2016. This month's award is a first: Mark C is the first 2-time CGOM Winner!
Mark is an hourly care giver. He has been with us for 9 years. Mark was working for a printer company before he decided he wanted to try something new. He grew up in Illinois with his 3 siblings. Growing up Mark enjoyed helping out around the house. He enjoyed cleaning and other chores. His father had Dementia and he took care of him daily. He helped his father do the physical therapy exercises that his doctor recommended he do at home. Mark enjoyed helping his father and found that he really enjoyed helping others.
He loves hearing his clients' stories and gains a lot of wonderful knowledge from them. Mark always has a friendly word for his staffer and keeps the office updated on his clients. Thank you for all that you do, Mark!
Please join us in congratulating Mae F. as our CAREGiver of the month for July 2016. Mae is an hourly care giver. She has been with us for almost 6 months. Mae's love for care giving comes from inside her heart. Care giving goes back to her childhood. Mae has spent her entire life being a care giver. As a child she would spend her summers voluntarily taking care of elderly relatives who needed extra help. While her friends would spend their summers playing, Mae wanted to spend hers helping others. Mae grew up in Iran and moved to Europe with her daughter in 1994. They moved to the United States in 2000. Mae received her Certified Nursing Assistant certificate in 2007. Communication is very important to Mae and she loves communicating with her clients. Thank you for all that you do, Mae!
Please join us in congratulating Diane S. as our CAREGiver of the month for June 2016. Diane is an hourly care giver. In just a few short months, she will have her 10-year anniversary with us! Diane was referred to our company in 2006 by a friend. At that time she had never worked as a care giver before. From the moment that Diane had her very first client with us, she knew she had found her passion. She loves to help others and has become very passionate about seniors.
Please join us in congratulating Jermel G. as our CAREGiver of the month for April 2016. Jermel is an hourly CAREGiver and has been with us since October 2015. Jermel was born in Chicago, IL. She moved to the suburbs when she was 9. She grew up in Bartlett and Aurora. Jermel has 5 siblings and is part of a large family. Her family members always come to her for support and advice. She has always had the title of the caregiver in her family.
Previously, Jermel worked at Friendship Village as an Activity Leader. She is very passionate about seniors and loves how much she learns each day from her client. Every day that she sees the smile on her client's face she is filled with joy. Her clients have had such a positive impact on her life that she says she would love to have this be her career forever. Jermel's mother-in-law referred her to us and we couldn't be happier!
Please join us in congratulating Valia T. as our CAREGiver of the month for May 2016.
Please join us in congratulating Rachel S. as our CAREGiver of the month for March. Rachel is an hourly caregiver who been with us for more than 10 years! Rachel was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. She loves to make everyone around her laugh and smile, which she really is great at! While living in Texas, Rachel met her husband. Rachel and her husband moved to Palatine the day of their wedding! She has 3 children who are living as far away as Japan. She loves being a mother but she now has the time to put her all into care giving! When Rachel moved to Palatine she began visiting a dear friend’s mother daily at a local nursing home. She would spend time with her with her only hope being to brighten her day! Rachel says working with Home Instead is “not a job, it’s truly the love that we give seniors that is so rewarding”. It is her passion, love, and enthusiasm that makes her such a wonderful care giver! CONGRATULATIONS, RACHEL!
Please join us in congratulating Linda W. as our CAREGiver of the Month for February 2016. Linda has been with us for 5 years. Linda was born in Tennessee and moved to Chicago when she was 12, and she kept her beautiful southern accent all these years! CAREGiving is her second career, although it comes naturally to her. Her first career was in art, but when her employer went bankrupt, her minister advised her to do something with people, as she always made people smile. Linda found Home Instead Senior Care and hasn’t looked back! Recently Linda has suffered personal loss. But her client and her client’s family were never impacted. Linda is a tremendous professional, a loving CAREGiver and we are lucky to have her. Congratulations on this award, Linda!
Please join us in congratulating Amo K.as our CAREGiver of the Month for January!
Amo is a very hard worker and excellent CAREGiver. Our clients love him and we value him as a dedicated CAREGiver and employee. We are proud to present the January CAREGiver of the Month to you. Thank you for all you do, Amo.