The two Home Instead Senior Care® clients seemed to be oblivious to the presence of their CAREGiver, Shiovon, who was standing several feet away as they chatted. The clients agreed on their view of her qualities while roundly complimenting Shiovon, who recently was honored as CAREGiver of the Month for owner Lisa Rabito's award-winning Home instead Senior Care franchise in Metairie that serves the Orleans and Jefferson Parishes.
The humble Shiovon admitted she felt "a little funny" as the clients continued to offer superlatives about her CAREGiver skills. The residents of the same assisted living community – they live on different floors – actually had been introduced to each other by Shiovon and had become friends. Now Shiovon's clients talk to each other daily in the dining room.
Shiovon said: "One client is 95 and has a condition that affects both eyes. She stays in her room a lot and listens to books. She's comfortable with that, but I thought she needed a friend. I am happy to see them interact. She is not so lonely now. My other client is a little more outgoing." Shiovon has been coming to the care community for three years for the client who is nearly blind. "I talk to all residents and strike up conversations. The whole staff knows me," she said.
On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, Shiovon takes the nearly blind client to a wellness center a mile away so she can participate in water aerobics, which she has done since 2005. "The water aerobics keep her healthy and moving. She compliments me on how quickly I get her ready, always within 30 minutes after arriving for my shift. My client is the oldest one in the class. She has a buddy who helps her, in addition to her instructor. Everybody loves her."
After the 45-minute pool session, Shiovon helps her client shower and fixes her hair. "She wears a cute style and wishes she could see it. She receives compliments and hears how nice it is. The care community workers and others frequently tell Shiovon: "You fix her hair so well."
CAREGiver Development Coordinator Fay Kelting said: "Shiovon is just an awesome person.
Shiovon is so sweet-spirited, and she is always trying to help her clients." Shiovon joined Home Instead Senior Care on Aug. 5, 2014, after she found Home Instead on a job website while looking for a second job to pair with another job where she had worked at a medical clinic.
"I wanted a career where I would care for others, especially the elderly. At the clinic, geriatric patients were our specialty," Shiovon recalled. "For a while, I'd work for Home Instead on the weekends and at the clinic on weekdays. Then I went completely with Home Instead as a fulltime job in 2016."
Shiovon also has been a family caregiver, assisting her mother, who suffered a stroke. "I took care of Mom at home for about two years, then she went to a care community. Mom lived in Baton Rouge and, at the time, I didn't live far away. I'd go to help her every day. I did everything for Mom, runs errands, housekeeping," she said.
Shiovon discussed her role as a Home Instead CAREGiver, saying: "I am able to be a part of the clients' daily life. I like to give compassion and respect. It's all about the clients. Whatever the client needs, I am there to help. I treat the clients as if they were my mom. I have had good fits with all clients, and I have been gratified about the good things they've told the office." In fact, fill-in clients always want Shiovon to come back, but she already assists three regular clients.
"My goal," Shiovon said, "is to keep going with Home Instead. I also am working on being an inventor of senior-citizen equipment, based on what I see with my clients. I know what doesn't work and what could be designed better. I keep a record of my ideas in a journal. I have submitted ideas to a company and hope to get something going next year. The company and I have talked. I want to improve lives with my inventions as much as I do as a CAREGiver."
Home Instead Senior Care CAREGivers are screened, trained, bonded and insured. For inquiries about employment, please call 504-455-4911 or apply online. For further information about Home Instead Senior Care, visit our website.
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