CAREGiver Linda Compton and her 65,000 fellow Home Instead Senior Care® colleagues are among America's unsung heroes. They are selfless, compassionate professional senior-care specialists who are strongly vetted, specially trained and take ongoing education classes to help seniors remain in their homes and as independent as possible.
Linda has held state licenses as a CNA and a medication technologist for 32 years. She graduated from Robert E. Lee High School in Springfield, Virginia, and attended Fairfax College for her nurse's training. CAREGiver candidates do not need to be CNAs or med techs to be considered for employment at Home Instead Senior Care® of the Northern Shenandoah Valley. But Linda does have considerable experience, including work in hospitals and care facilities.
"I always wanted to do something in nursing. With God's help, I accomplished that. At the start, I learned a lot from the hospital. Home Instead CAREGivers, like hospital and facility CNAs, must have strong character attributes for providing TLC (tender loving care) and having patience," said Linda, who joined owner Aaron Blight's award-winning Winchester franchise in April 2015.
Linda's Home Instead Senior Care office selected her as its CAREGiver of the Month in July. "The honor made me feel proud. It feels good to be recognized because I had never been honored before," Linda said. "When I've been asked how I feel about being a CAREGiver, it's like, 'Yeah, it's great!' More people would also feel fulfilled being a CAREGiver, but there are things to consider."
Linda pointed out: "A potential senior care specialist needs to know what he or she is getting into. While it is rewarding, it is sometimes not easy. You've got to deal with challenges. It's important to respond in the proper way to dementia behavior. For example, a client's continual repetition does not bother me. They can tell me the same story or ask the same question a thousand times, but that's OK. Some wonder why a senior's long-term memory can be good but not the short-term memory. Unfortunately, it's just that way a lot of the time. You have to understand that and react accordingly – like being ready to react properly when they have forgotten they ate 10 minutes earlier."
Linda offer caregiving tips:
Linda said a senior care specialist's focus must be on the senior. "Leave your problems at the senior's door. Don't go in depressed, because seniors can sense it. The seniors are not there to cheer up someone who's supposed to be helping them," she said, "and don't throw in the towel at the first sign of trouble. Be a careful listener; ask a lot of questions. Be interested in what they have to say. Know that what you're doing is very, very important. It should feel natural."
Finally, she said: "I plan to keep going as a CAREGiver until God wants me to rest."
All Home Instead Senior Care CAREGivers are screened, trained, bonded
and insured. For inquiries about employment, please call 540-722-8750
or apply online. For further information about our home care services, please visit Home Instead Senior Care.
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