It’s never too late to change career paths! Cindy started working with us 6 years ago when she was 54. Read her story and what she likes about the job in our “Caregiver Spotlight.”
What’s your background and how did you get into caregiving?
I got into caregiving because I was looking to take a new direction in my career. For most of my life I’ve done clerical and office work, and I was ready for a change. Six years ago, I was at an art show and a friend who had previously been a caregiver with Sequoia Senior Solutions suggested I look into caregiving. I applied and have been here ever since. I love working with people and taking care of them so it’s a great fit.
Prior to working at Sequoia Senior Solutions, I had some informal experience caring for my mother in 2004. She had dementia and I filled in for her 24/7 caregiver for about three months. I was so thankful to have that time with her! She ended up passing a few months later.
What does an average day look like for you?
Prior to COVID, I was working with a few different clients at once. Currently, I just have one client who I care for about 20 hours per week. She has Alzheimer’s, so it was a little challenging at first. But now that I’ve gotten to know her and her needs, we’ve built a great rapport and it’s like a friend visiting.
She has an art background, which is a passion of mine as well, so a lot of our time together is spent doing arts and crafts projects while we chat. She also likes music and singing, so we listen to music, too. The most important thing is connection. It’s so great for them to have someone they can talk to and do activities with. It’s vital human contact.
When I arrive for the morning shifts, I typically make her breakfast and then take care of any household chores like cleaning up the kitchen and making the bed. For the afternoon shifts, I’ll make her lunch if she hasn’t had it yet or snacks throughout the day. I like cooking, so I enjoy this part of the job! Her husband and children are very loving and supportive – it’s a beautiful thing to see. You couldn’t ask for a better family to work with.
What do you like about being a caregiver?
It’s very rewarding! I love doing for others and being of service – doing what I can to bring happiness and help them have a good day. It makes my life richer and it feels good to know that I’m making a positive impact on someone’s life. I’ve met a lot of wonderful people over the last six years and it’s been very enriching to my life.
What do you like to do outside of work? Any plans for the future?
I love the arts and video production and photography. And I am a member of the Santa Rosa Mineral and Gem society, so I’m active in that. I plan to continue caregiving for the foreseeable future.
What’s the best part of working for Sequoia Senior Solutions?
It’s such a caring and dedicated group of people. Very hard working. Everyone does their very best. My care manager Emily is a wonderful person. It’s just a great team! And the training is good – you feel supported throughout and ready to do the job. I’m looking forward to doing some of the specialty trainings in the future.
Any advice for those who want to become a caregiver?
There’s such a wide variety of clients and their needs are all different, so every situation is new. It’s important to have the training that Sequoia Senior Solutions provides. Be patient with yourself and ask questions. Don’t be afraid to call your care manager. It’s a learning process, and it takes some time to grow into it but it’s one of the most rewarding things you can do. It feels good to be of service to others. This is a good job for you if you enjoy working with people, like variety, and are looking for a rewarding career.
Want to learn more about how to get started on your own caregiving journey with Sequoia Senior Solutions? We’re hiring! You can learn more about the job here, and check out our Top Ten Reasons to Be a Professional Caregiver post. You can also read more caregiver stories on our blog.