Seniors with big hearts
When the time comes, how do seniors and their loved ones find safe and compassionate care so they can remain in their own homes? I found one option of particular interest.
Although there are multiple Seniors Helping Seniors franchises across the country, the Seniors Helping Seniors Sussex County In-Home Care Services is the only franchise in Delaware. Director Amy McDermott employs 55 seniors, who serve more than 50 clients in Sussex County. This requires dedication, as they are celebrating their five-year anniversary soon.
“I hire people with huge hearts, many of who are retired,” says McDermott. “What makes Seniors Helping Seniors in-home care special is that seniors offer a warmth and understanding that comes from experience and wisdom gained over the years. Seniors can relate to the difficulties of aging and offer their support in a comfortable way.”
Elizabeth from Harbeson hired help for her 90-year-old mother Helene and said: “I call them my mother’s play dates. Some days the caregiver would drive my mom to the ocean to look at the water and then take her to Dairy Queen. She really has my mother’s best interest in heart!”
Helene’s caregiver Sue explains: “Helene likes to do the things I like to do. We like to drive around and look at houses. Her dad used to be a carpenter.” Even though Helene has recently moved to Brandywine Assisted Living, Sue still takes her out on short trips so her world doesn’t seem so small.
“I gave my mother a gift when I discovered Seniors Helping Seniors,” declares Harbeson resident Linda, who tried three other agencies before finding the right fit. “These women fulfilled my dream. The staff are ethical and dependable.”
Maryanne Murray, owner of Griswold Home Care, knows firsthand about the challenges of hiring skilled workers. She cautions anyone who is considering hiring help that they should work with a licensed agency. Otherwise, Murray notes, “The family could be responsible if the worker gets injured on their property.”
McDermott spent years in administration in the healthcare industry, traveling to many states. It was on one of her weekly flights when she picked up a magazine and read about the founder of Seniors Helping Seniors, Kiran Yocom. “Her story and her mission to help seniors hit me like an arrow to the heart,” said McDermott.
McDermott carefully screens all care providers and tries to match caregivers and recipients by personality.
Employee Valerie has been with the company over a year now and said, “The best thing about my job is to listen to those who want to share their stories and not feel isolated. We all want someone to listen to us.”
Millsboro resident Lillian will celebrate her 100th birthday in July, and she is thrilled with the services she receives. “Besides being great company, these ladies help me shower, vacuum and fix my breakfast,” she said.
Employees earn minimum wage and work between four and 30 hours a week. Some of their tasks include meal preparation, grocery shopping, transportation, laundry, light housekeeping and companionship.
“My caregivers are from every walk of life, but they all have something in common; they have a servant’s heart,” said McDermott. “When I ask them if they like their job with us, they say to me ‘I love my job!’ Honestly, how many people can say ‘I’ve changed someone’s life today?’”
If you would like more information, contact Director Amy McDermott at SeniorsDelaware@aol.com or phone 302-675-9786.