Wanted: Compassionate and dedicated caregivers willing to assist area senior citizens with a variety of routine tasks and chores, and provide some much appreciated companionship in the process — and get paid while doing it.
That’s the message the president and owner of two local Home Instead Senior Care offices is trying to get out to the public.
The Home Instead Senior Care family network of locally-owned franchise offices was developed to provide trusted in-home care, and to help families keep aging relatives in their homes as they grow older.
Tasks like grabbing a can of soup from the top shelf, opening the mail, reading a book, folding laundry, tying shoelaces, or scrapbooking family history are not as easy as they used to be for many seniors. Whether it’s in their home, in an assisted-living facility, or a nursing home, Home Instead Senior Care is providing millions of hours of senior services annually through 900 franchise offices throughout the U.S. and more than a dozen other countries.
The services provided include assistance with trips to the doctor, reminders to take the right medication at the right time, meal preparation, light housekeeping, errands, shopping, and even Alzheimer’s and dementia care. The result is companionship allowing seniors to feel safe and independent while they age in the home they’ve lived in for years.
Shannon Wygant, president and owner of Home Instead Senior Care of Waterford and Walled Lake, is crying out to hire caregivers at both offices, despite the tight job market and slow economic recovery.
“We prefer to hire caregivers with experience, but we do offer in-house practical training,” he said. “My whole philosophy is being a caregiver is a vocation. All of our staff are highly screened to see that they truly are a caregiver, and that they have the compassion that you just can’t teach and a common sense that isn’t common anymore. We can teach people about proper body mechanics, how to bathe someone, and how to make a bed, but there are other things you can’t just invent overnight. We want to make sure that the people we hire are going to be around for six, eight, 10 months, or even a year down the road.”
According to Wygant, who celebrated his 11th year as a Home Instead Senior Care franchisee on Nov. 15, this is the time of year when his offices pick up new clients.
“Nowadays, more families are trying to do long-distance caregiving,” he said. “We see a lot of calls coming in as kids come home for Thanksgiving and see their mom isn’t doing as well as they thought and needs some extra help. While more families are very active in trying to provide care to their relatives, they sometimes need our help. We become an extra son or daughter, part of an active team. Other clients may only have a few children and they’re in Texas or California, so we become their whole support network.”
With November being National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, Home Instead of Waterford and Walled Lake is offering a free Alzheimer’s care educational seminar from 7 to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 28 at the Walled Lake office, located at 109 Legato.
Wygant said his offices are now preparing for their annual “Be a Santa to a Senior” program, speaking with local businesses, senior centers, and others in the community to spread word about the program and show how it touches the lives of seniors during the holiday season.
“We distributed over 800 gifts to needy seniors in Oakland County last year,” he said. “It’s a ton of work, and a beautiful thing. We find seniors that are in a difficult situation and don’t have any family and make sure they have a present to open.”
Watch the Home Instead Senior Care of Waterford and Walled Lake website for details on how you can get involved in the program, from welcoming a tree full of the names of gift recipients to be placed in your establishment, to how you can pick a senior to give a gift to, or how you can participate in the annual “wrap party.” Call Nancy, Lorraine, or Linda at 866-922-1400 to learn more about the program.
You can find the Waterford office of Home Instead Senior Care at 3990 W. Walton Boulevard, Suite A in Waterford.
To learn more, visit the Home Instead Senior Care of Waterford and Walled Lake website at homeinstead.com/408, or call 866-922-1400.