CARING IS THE FOUNDATION. SENIOR NEEDS IS THE “HOUSE” BUILT BY HOME INSTEAD.
Rebecca Kiger and Tim Hollis
To say the Home Instead team cares about their clients is an understatement. And it is the team concept that drives their goal of caring.
That caring began six years ago when Dave Kiger’s elderly mother needed in-home assistance. At the time, there were few resources available in the local area for in-home care. Then Dave and his wife Rebecca decided to purchase a Home Instead franchise and establish operations in Maryville, TN. Their plan was to help with the care of his mother and provide a service for others.
“The Kigers saw a need in Maryville and purchased the franchise from a woman who was retiring,” stated Tim Hollis, Community Relations Manager at the Maryville office. “They wanted to help others obtain in-home services. Since then the company has grown and expanded to neighboring cities. Our services extend as far as Athens, Etowah and Calhoun, TN,” he says.
Caring for the community shows in the company’s day-to-day operations. The family style atmosphere creates the foundation for working with clients. Defining the client’s needs is the priority. Hollis stated that providing services starts with a detailed interview with the prospective client and the family. “Rebecca Kiger meets with the client and family then determines what they need. This could range from simple companionship to a full cadre of services such as cleaning, laundering, meal preparation and transportation. An individualized plan is developed by Rebecca in conjunction with the client. Clients and families can choose very limited services or a comprehensive set of services. “We don’t provide a service you don’t need,” stated Hollis.
Caring is not only a philosophy, but also reflected in the term CAREgiver, which means ‘Changing Aging Through Research and Education’. The main office, based in Omaha, Nebraska, partners with the University of Nebraska to stay up-to-date on the latest in dementia care. This is the core of their caregiver training programs. The programs prepare caregivers to appropriately deal with the dementia client. Interactions with the client are not just about tasks. The caregivers use special ways to communicate with them. One method they use when speaking with the elderly are conversation starters. These are handy cards with quick reference phrases the caregivers can use when talking with the client with dementia. Another tool the caregivers use helps the client place their memories and photos in a book called the Life Journal. This is especially helpful for those with early stages of dementia.
Of all the good deeds Home Instead has done, none brings more pride than the Senior Needs Program. This program provides free equipment to those in need. “We were seeing clients who could not afford necessary equipment,” stated Hollis. Equipment such as walkers, bedside commodes, and hospital beds is necessary to improve independence or help the caregiver provide care. These were out of reach for many clients. Insurance may pay part of the cost, but not all. “We asked the community for donated items. We then give those items to the clients who need them. The community response has been tremendous, especially after Knoxville’s Channel 8 News did a brief segment on our program. Two local senior living facilities, Brookdale and Asbury, have been generous with their donations. However, the need outstrips the supply. We need equipment on a continuous basis. If the donor can’t bring it to us, we can pick it up”.
For more information on Home Instead services or to donate an item, call Tim Hollis at 865-801-4481. Email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit their Facebook site: Senior Needs Brought to You by Home Instead on Facebook.