(This column is dedicated to Margaret Wood Davis. She is one of the most strong, independent and positive people I have ever met. I am lucky that she is my grandmother. Mardie, thank you for being such a wonderful part of my life.)
BERLIN — Sometimes the strongest of us need help. As a licensed and certified clinical social worker, I have been working with families for over a decade. One of the toughest times that a family can face is when a family must ask for help. This can especially be true when the family members who need help are the ones who were always there for us, our parents or grandparents.
Many families help the eldest members of the family by creating an internal network of support. This network can take many forms, from moving the senior person into the home of a daughter or son, allowing the senior to move to an assisted living facility, continuing the senior in his or her own home with the assistance of a son or daughter.
Often, once it is decided that a family member needs support, that family will feel helpless, unsure of what resources are in the community to help. The family will often turn to a family physician for advice or have a family meeting to configure care for the person in need. Often still, the care is provided by one person, a daughter or son, who re-arranges his or her personal and professional life to care for the person in need. This care can take a toll on the members of the family who step up to provide the ever-increasing level of care that a family member in need might require. This is where an agency like Visiting Angels can help.
Visiting Angels has one focus — to keep seniors happy, healthy, independent and at home. Caregivers who come from Visiting Angels can perform many non-medical tasks in the home of the senior. From bathing and grooming, to light housekeeping and light meal preparation, our job is to help families. The type of care that the senior in your life will receive is determined only by what that senior needs. Visiting Angels is here to customize the level of treatment to the needs of the care recipient. Visiting Angels will interview, screen and background check experienced in-home care givers for families.
My job is to meet with to establish a plan of care for the senior and to recommend a caregiver. My job is the best job in the world — to have the opportunity to help sons and daughters provide supportive and compassionate care to the most loved and admired members of their family.
(The writer is a Berlin native and is the owner of Visiting Angels Eastern Shore. He can be reached at 443-513-4149, or via firstname.lastname@example.org.)