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June 2018 CAREGiver of the Month - Freda

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Freda’s Service to Seniors Springs From a Deep FaithCAREGiver of the Month - Freda

The center of CAREGiver of the Month Freda Jackson’s compassionate world is her rock-solid belief system. Her entire being emanates from her faith in God, including her strong drive to serve seniors and their families on behalf of Home Instead Senior Care® of Winchester.

“All of this is a ministry. I see my job as an affirmation of God’s plan for me,” said Freda, who on Jan. 26, 2018, joined the franchise that serves 26 communities in the Northern Shenandoah Valley. “If I believe my life belongs to Jesus Christ, I am certain He wants me to be with the elderly and infirm, including the most challenging situations. God provides my heart for those who need help. This isn’t just a job, because these clients are like family.”

Freda, who experienced a nurturing childhood, later returned love and support to her dad and mom as a family caregiver. Her parents were married for 45 years. “I was compassionate as a child. It wasn’t hard to see the loneliness and despair in others, and I tried to help those in need – even if it was just a positive word. I always could see things beyond what you can see physically,” Freda said.

“Dad died in 1999, but Mom lived on for a while longer. She was my best friend, she knew Jesus sustained her life and lived the best she could according to God’s Word. When Mom died, I lost my balance. I had called her every night at the same time.”

Freda had served in the mission field in Georgia for four years before moving back to the Winchester area and joining Home Instead Senior Care. Freda, who immerses herself in prayer to discern God’s leading, believes spiritual signs pointed her toward Home Instead Senior Care before she returned to Virginia. Those signs were confirmed when she was buying fruit at a store and ran into a former colleague from a health-care community.

“My friend is currently working for Home Instead Senior Care and absolutely loves her job. Our meeting was more than just a coincidence, in my mind, because I had been thinking about Home Instead. Incredibly, I had been seeking a third local reference for Home Instead, and my former co-worker was just that person,” Freda said. “God made it all fit together. I received a call from Home Instead the day after I contacted them online.”

Freda made her mark immediately. When asked why one client accepted her as a CAREGiver after arbitrarily rejecting offers of help from others, Freda said: “Clients know when someone understands from the heart. I look at them as a beloved family member. Some clients have developed a hardened exterior because of life’s difficulties, perhaps followed by disease or dementia. It is fulfilling to see them warm up to me. One thing is key: Don’t order them around. I pray for each client, even if they don’t know it. It’s a help for them because God is sustaining this person. In a relationship with God, you see needs, and God tells you what to do.”

Freda remembers when she was the first CAREGiver to help a first-time client who has dementia. “I wasn’t sure I was the right person for her, but God knew I was. Shortly after I started, the client’s daughter told a visiting nurse that I was the one for her mother. The client has told me, ‘I miss you on the weekends.’ She is not just client – I treat her like a valued family member and a child of God just as we all are. I can see the difference in her physically and emotionally since I started. I can see her acceptance and respect.”

Freda also knows part of the client’s emotional pain and sometimes difficult behavior comes from the loss of a pet. Freda also has experienced the same pain, so she empathizes. “She’s totally alone for the first time in her life because she lost her dog, which was her family. It was her late husband’s therapy dog and a strong connection to her husband. The dog loved her, and she depended on it,” Freda explained. “I lost my dog in 2010, so I understand the pain of losing a pet and the loneliness that follows.”

Freda draws spiritual strength from Bible verses, and she wanted to share some passages: In the Book of Psalms, chapters 23, 32 and 103, as well as John 15:13 and Acts 17:28 in the New Testament. “I don’t force my faith on others, but if they ask, I feel obligated to tell them what I know and have experienced. And that is: I am who I am by the grace of God whose Word is pinned on my heart. God is good, and His strength is sufficient for me.”

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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