Sheron’s Long Career of Helping Others Now Includes CAREGiver of Year Honor
Sheron Kirk has been honored as CAREGiver of the Year at Home Instead® of Jackson, an award-winning franchise owned by Bryson and Linda McQuiston. Sheron’s 2021 accolade was well-earned and perhaps a hint of something even bigger. Long-time family and friends have witnessed Sheron’s compassionate spirit in action for the past 30-plus years and would tell everyone she deserves a lifetime achievement honor, if there were one.
As a family caregiver, she cared for her younger sisters. Sheron also has taken care of a twin son who has Asperger’s Syndrome – a high-functioning form of autism – for his entire life; she has two other children, her other twin son and a daughter. She also took care of a grandmother who had vascular dementia. “When I think about caring for others,” Sheron said, “I realize I have been doing this most of my life. Caring for others has always been a draw for me.”
Sheron’s home life still involves daily family caregiving because her autistic son lives with her and probably always will. She also pondered a work career arising from her empathetic personality. “I have always had an interest in health care and began my path to caring directly after high school. I went to school to become a surgical technologist. Following that, I began taking my pre-requisites for nursing school,” Sheron recalled.
But life had other plans for Sheron, and she left school. She became pregnant with her twins, and her daughter followed 26 months later. “My true path for family caregiving started. The next few years were very difficult as I adjusted to learning how to care for my autistic son and continuing to care for my other two children. We learned together, and they grew fast. As my children entered high school, I went back to school to finish my degree,” Sheron explained.
In December 2013, Sheron graduated from Union University with a Bachelor of Science degree in health care management, about the time her sons graduated from high school. But another challenge came Sheron’s way. “As I finished school, my grandmother was diagnosed with vascular dementia. In 2014, she was living with my parents, and my mother had been caring for her. As my grandmother’s condition worsened, my mother was overwhelmed with the amount of care my grandmother needed,” Sheron said.
Sheron began helping with her grandmother daily. At that time, Sheron’s sister mentioned she had a friend who worked for Home Instead. Sheron pointed out: “Holding a CAREGiver job would allow me to work with a flexible schedule, and I could still care for my grandmother.
So, I joined Home Instead in 2015. After my grandmother passed, I began taking on more intensive-care clients with Home Instead.”
Sheron added: “Working with Home Instead, I have met so many people from different walks of life and varying levels of required care. The interesting lives these seniors have led and the amazing stories they tell have been some of the highlights of this job.”
Sheron’s regular client was a farmer who still lives on his farm, and Sheron enjoys listening to the client’s farm-life stories and what it was like to grow up there. “I love to take him outside and talk to the cows,” Sheron said.
“I will never forget the time we were watching the cotton being harvested, and he was telling me how to drive in the field. He was yelling, ‘Go high, go low, go high,’ as I was missing all the tractor ruts. We sat there for a while and watched the harvest. My client was so excited as we watched them pick the cotton, and he told me so many stories about what it was like when he used to do it.”
Home Instead staff members are equally excited to spread the good word about their CAREGiver of the Month. CAREGiver Experience Manager Brooke Childers said, “We wish to congratulate Sheron on being named our 2021 CAREGiver of the Year. We have been so privileged to have Sheron on our team since 2015. She has made a tremendous impact on those around her. We are so incredibly proud of her and want to thank Sheron for her incredible service and dedication to providing exceptional service.”
Sheron embodies Home Instead’s guiding principles of “Build Trust, Take the Lead and Share Your Heart.” She is someone who is exceptional at her work with any client, Brooke emphasized. For Sheron, touching lives impacts her soul, whether she is providing physical help such as light housekeeping, meal preparation, medication reminders or personal care or if she is offering emotional support in a companionship role.
All Home Instead CAREGivers are screened, trained, bonded and insured. For inquiries about employment, please call (731) 984-7062 or apply online. For further information about Home Instead, visit our website.