Northern Shenandoah Valley (Change Location)

Oct 20, 2022

Family Caregiving Episode Propelled Elizabeth to Home Instead

Written By: Brian Lahm
Elizabeth Dingus, Caregiver

Elizabeth Dingus helped a family member successfully turn the corner on recovery and rehabilitation following an orthopedic procedure. The situation inspired Elizabeth to later provide the same kind of assistance to seniors as a Care Professional of the Month for Home Instead® of Winchester. Keith Clay owns the award-winning franchise that serves Virginia’s Northern Shenandoah Valley.

“For my whole life, I had worked in the customer-service industry and was ready to change career paths. Being self-employed for 20 years, I was ready to work for someone else,” Elizabeth admitted. “I had the opportunity to assist one of my aunts while she was recovering from hip replacement surgery. That experience helped me realize I rather enjoyed helping a person in need. My youngest daughter then suggested I consider taking a CNA course.”

Elizabeth added: “When I did decide to change career paths, I searched the classified ads in our local newspaper. For some reason, the Home Instead ad caught my attention. After completing my CNA course at Blue Ridge Community College, I was fortunately hired by Home Instead.”

Elizabeth came aboard at Home Instead 11 months ago. In less than a year, she was honored as the franchise’s Caregiver of the Month in September. Allyson Starling, a manager for the Winchester and Martinsburg franchises, made the announcement. Allyson has a bird’s eye view of Elizabeth’s work while working in the human resources department and in recruitment and retention. Of course, Allyson received recommendations from other staff members.

“I want to thank the Home Instead franchise and staff. I am humbled by this recognition,” Elizabeth said.

Among the considerations for achieving Caregiver of the Month status, an employee has shown he or she has gone above and beyond the call of duty. Empathy and compassion are taken into account for the award, as well as skill and wisdom for dealing with challenging situations. Elizabeth embodies Home Instead’s guiding principles of  “Build Trust, Take the Lead and Share Your Heart.” Focusing on Home Instead’s training, processes and procedures of successful caregiving also helped Elizabeth earn the award.

In addition to her strong companionship skills, Elizabeth provides safety assurance, meal preparation, medication reminders, light housekeeping, and transportation and errands. She offers personal assistance with eating, grooming, dressing, bathing, incontinence care, cognitive impairment, hospice support and mobility. By expertly doing so, Elizabeth and her fellow Caregiver not only assist their clients, but help their families eliminate worry, reduce stress and re-establish personal freedom.

“What I most like about being a Caregiver is meeting the clients’ needs and bringing joy and happiness to their lives. Seeing a client laugh and smile is the best reward of all,” Elizabeth said.

Elizabeth explained she has been touched by every Home Instead client with whom she has worked. For Elizabeth, one client experience has stood out as the most rewarding. When Elizabeth first arrived at the client’s home, she was weak and experiencing personal-care issues. The client’s mobility also was lacking.

“During the 10 months I worked with her,” Elizabeth said, “I strived to make sure her personal care and exercise challenges were met. I also made sure her linens were clean, as well as the rest of her entire home. Whenever it was possible, I provided variety in food during meal preparation. By the time our client no longer needed our services, I could see a significant improvement in her health and happiness.”

Elizabeth loves being a part of the Caregiver team for the Virginia franchise, a member of a network comprised of Home Instead, Inc. and its parent company, Honor. With the world’s largest home-care network and the most advanced care platform, Honor and Home Instead are revolutionizing care for older adults, their families and Caregivers. Combined, the network has more than 100,000 Caregivers across 13 countries, meeting the growing needs of millions of older adults and their families worldwide.

All Home Instead Caregivers are screened, trained and insured. For inquiries about employment, please apply online at For further information about Home Instead services, visit our website at

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