"I am continually struck by the professionalism, high level of caring and exemplary caregivers that I have met from Home Instead. My mom couldn't live without them, and neither could I.
As Operations Manager, Jessica oversees the daily operations of Home Instead Senior Care ensuring that our high standards are met with exceptional CAREGivers and customer service. "I am especially touched by CAREGivers who come to Home Instead because of a personal caregiving experience. One such person is Jennifer who has been with us for a year. Jennifer moved her own mother in with her and cared for her during the last 5 years of her life without any outside help. Jennifer's Mom had Parkinson's and related dementia. For Jennifer to turn around and come to Home Instead to make a difference in other people's lives is tremendous. She really knows how to anticipate a client's needs and to assist them in remaining independent. She knows dementia firsthand and has a heightened compassion because of her journey. She is a calming presence for her clients and their families. To Jennifer, it really is personal."
As an RN, Diane works carefully with clients to ensure that their needs are being met and that CAREGivers have the necessary skills to help their clients age in place. Diane does an excellent job in reinforcing skills for our CAREGivers so that they have the confidence to help clients during their transitions. "Working with older adults to fulfill their wishes is so satisfying to me, especially when we partner with others in the community to achieve a person's goal to remain at home. One story that made an impact on me is Kenneth. He was 85 and was released from rehab to go into hospice care during his final days with stage 4 cancer. Kenneth's son and daughter wanted him to go to hospice house but Kenneth really wanted to receive hospice care at home. I was certain that we could accommodate Kenneth's wishes. His adult children were skeptical but Kenneth was appreciative that I supported his decision. I told the son and daughter that I would be the first one to tell him if it wouldn't work. We worked with hospice. It was the most beautiful union of in-home care and hospice care to satisfy a person's final wishes. After 2 or 3 days, the son and daughter were convinced that this was the right decision. The daughter admitted that she was trying to make a decision at the time that seemed to be easier for her. Additionally, Kenneth did not want a hospital bed but I told him he really needed one. The next day he agreed to a hospital bed when he realized that it was best for his care. Our CAREGivers provided him and his family with the most extraordinary care. They engaged in many meaningful conversations with him about his life and legacy. Ten days later, Kenneth died in his own home, under his own terms. To me, it was so fulfilling to play a role in Kenneth's wishes and to witness the great compassion and dignity our CAREGivers gave him.
As a Home Care Consultant, Connie plays a critical role in educating other professionals in the senior and healthcare community and forms great partnerships with our referral providers. Connie's friendly nature and collaborative style keep us top of mind in Mecklenburg County.
"When I am in the community talking with our referral providers, I see firsthand the difference we make in helping others, especially those who return home after a fall or procedure and need a little extra help during their transition. I am especially proud of what we do when Social Workers and RN's look to us to help their patients when they are discharged from a hospital or rehab facility. I remember one time a social worker was so happy to see me when Ruth was about to be discharged from the hospital following a fall. Ruth, a very independent 93 year old, lived with her daughter and son-in-law in a separate mother-in-law apartment. Prior to her fall, Ruth cooked for herself, exercised every morning and overall, was very active and independent. Following her fall, she was not able to maintain her lifestyle. Since her daughter and son-in-law worked, they were not able to be there during the day. They were very anxious about how to help her. Our CAREGiver was able to come in 3 days a week for 12 hours a day and help her as a friend, companion and assistant. Ruth felt that she could still be independent and did not have to rely on family. Our CAREGiver helped prepare meals for Ruth, assist her in bathing, walk with her and help her with her physical therapy exercises. Her daughter was so relieved that we could be there when she could not. Stories like Ruth's motivate me to help others who need that extra assistance to make transitions during the challenging times in their lives."
As Retention Coordinator, Toni is responsible for ensuring that our CAREGiving team has the resources they need to provide exceptional care to our clients. She encourages CAREGivers, provides moral support as well as reinforces policies and procedures. According to Toni, "I am passionate about supporting, encouraging and caring for adults during their golden years. My grandmother Rose lived with us when I was a child, enabling me to spend time with her and become very close. As she aged and required more and more help, it felt natural to care for her in whatever way she needed. In my heart I felt I was simply giving back to her what she so easily and unselfishly gave to me all my life. Working at Home Instead has given me the opportunity to fulfill my passion to care for older adults in a way that satisfies their individual personal needs. I started with Home Instead as a CAREGiver myself. I realized I was on the lucky side of the coin when I met Marge, our client and her 5 adult children. It became easy to see why it was hard for these siblings to ask for help in caring for their Mom. Marge is so loving, kind and giving it was easy for her to raise 5 equally loving, kind and giving people. They felt they should have been able to do it on their own and expressed they did not want this care to replace but only be and extension of themselves. Communicating and working together toward the common goal of caring for Marge, we were able accomplish a plan of care they were all very happy with. In my current position I work with our CAREGivers to ensure that they have the same wonderful experience with Home Instead and their clients as I have had as a CAREGiver.
As part of the Recruiting and Retention team, Jackie helps Jessica in creating an exceptional team that truly cares for our seniors as if they were family. "We work hard in our office to find the Perfect Match for a client and a CAREGiver. One such situation that I will always remember is with a new CAREGiver, Regina. Mrs. P, our client, had difficulty communicating due to Parkinson's disease. A couple of CAREGivers were unable to understand her and became frustrated in working with her. After Regina became her CAREGiver, they developed a bond and Regina was the only person who was able to understand her. Even on her days off, Regina would help the office staff by interpreting messages to and from Mrs. P. It really was quite something."
Debbie plays an integral role in ensuring that the administrative and financial aspects of our business run smoothly. "As the Account Manager for Home Instead, I have the opportunity to talk to clients and family members. They often tell me how happy they are with the services, especially how much they love their CAREGiver. Recently, I received a call from client Grace. She said of her CAREGiver, 'Jennifer is worth every penny. She does everything I would ever want her to do for me and is such a joy to be around. You couldn't have made a more perfect match. I look forward to every minute with her.' These unsolicited comments are just icing on the cake for me and remind me that what we do at Home Instead is so very important and meaningful."
Darla offers much compassion in her role as Staffing Coordinator, ensuring Perfect Matches between clients and CAREGivers. "Clients and family members tell us all of the time how we make a difference in someone's life. One of our clients, Mr. M., was really not taking care of himself. He was eating frozen dinners and he was depressed following the loss of his daughter and wife in a short period of time. Our CAREGiver Delores asked Mr. M. what kind of food he liked. She went to the grocery store and purchased greens and sweet potatoes, corn, peas, and fish and asked Mr. M. to come sit with her in the kitchen while she cooked. Mr. M smelled the food and Delores explained how she was preparing his favorite food. She encouraged him to enjoy the wonderful aromas of the food. Mr. M ate for the first time in days. Because of Delores' help, our Care Manager instructed his other CAREGivers to ask the right questions to determine other types of food Mr. M enjoyed. Mr. M. is doing much better and is eating healthier meals these days."
As Staffing Coordinator, Joy focus on positive relationships helps her to find perfect client-CAREGiver matches. So many variables go into matching and scheduling, including personality, skill levels, location and client preferences for time and date, that Joy's puzzle-solving skills are tested regularly!
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