Keeping the family together

“The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the bosom of my family.”  Thomas Jefferson

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Our cultures, our societies, our religions are what keeps us together and united.  There comes a time in all our lives when we have to make difficult decisions concerning our own families and since we now live in a world where we are trying to don’t always easy.   This is fast becoming a way of life and it doesn’t mean that families care for each other any less, in fact it makes them realise even more how vulnerable family members can be.  So when the parents become less independent and need help and support, what to do then?   The natural solution would be to find a good care home, where the parents would be living on a full time basis and family can come and visit.  However this life doesn’t suit everybody, especially when the person needing the care wants to be near to their family and live in their home they have lived in for most of their adult lives.  They are used to seeing certain friends, visiting their local shops and walking to the local park.  It doesn’t make sense to take this away from them.  It can also leave the loved one feel isolated as they are not surrounded by family and have to make new friendships, possibly with people who don’t understand their culture, religion or even language.  There are circumstances where a care home is the only option, but in many cases it needn’t be.

There is another solution, and that is home care.  It can be entirely up to the family how much and what sort of care is wanted.  Having this allows the family to remain together, giving some respite to those who are caring for their family and also allowing grandchildren to remain close to their grandparents.  Having a support worker at home you can all benefit from a better quality of life by being close together and actually spending quality time with each other, knowing that the professional carer is there to take care of the every day duties that can take up this precious time.

It is so important that traditions can be kept constant in a changing world.  These traditions can continue and be passed down through the generations.  Some of us are lucky to have really great memories of growing up surrounded by family members sharing in the traditions that our forefathers grew up with – wouldn’t it be great if our children could experience the same?  Memories they can share and pass on to their own children.  The family unit plays a critical role in our society and in the education of the generation to come.

 

Is the customer still King?

iStock_000019598030SmallWalking home at night, have you ever wondered why you do not get a bill through your door for the street lighting that you use?  You use it every evening, it lights your way home, it makes you feel safe, it’s always there.  You are therefore a user of this service, or a “service user” if you prefer, so why are you not sent a bill?

What has been clear to me for long time now, is that a service user is not a customer, that is why you do not directly pay for this service.  If any rational person was asked to pay for street lighting, they would say “no”, since the rational person could not quantify how much they used versus the next person.  The rational person would say “someone else will pay for it, so I do not need to”.

However, if the same rational person was asked to pay for care for themselves, of course they would say yes, since, this is a service that they are receiving themselves, they have individual benefits from receiving this service, this service is for them and them alone and more importantly, no other rational individual will pay for them.  This is why I believe that the person getting the care is not a ‘service user’ but a customer.  The word ‘customer’ comes with several underlying connotations, and the one that everyone remembers is “customer is King”.

It’s about time the management and leadership in the social care industry started treating the people that they care for as customers and not just users of a service.  Does this really make a big difference?  Yes it does, the customer is King, whereas the user is just a number.  We need to constantly remind the leadership that no industry in history has ever developed, let alone survived without listening to their customers.

We do not have any service users at Acacia Homecare, we only have customers.

Careers at Acacia Homecare

Acacia #Homecare is a #domiciliary care company. We strongly believe in giving everyone an opportunity, whether somebody has care experience or not. What we look for in a person is passion for care, determination, commitment and the ability to provide quality #care. It is our duty as an employer to seek these qualities and then nurture and build on them.

                      Rebecca 3 years

One such example is Rebecca Horton. Rebecca began her #career with us in 2014 as a care worker in Staines and in 2017 she became a Field Care Supervisor. Her journey hasn’t been easy but with her sheer determination, her passion for ensuring our customers are receiving outstanding quality care and selflessness she is on her way to achieving her career goals.
Before Rebecca began her life as a care worker she worked within various administrative roles. Unfortunately in 2013 her Grandma became ill and Rebecca supported her through this. Whilst in the dementia ward she noticed that the nurses just didn’t have the time for patients, to actually sit with them and talk with them. So Rebecca took it upon herself on her visits to also sit down with the other patients and spend some time with them.
After her Nan passed away, Rebecca felt she wanted to do more within the community and left her #job and looked for work in care. She looked online and found Acacia Homecare. She applied for a position as a #careworker with us. After the induction programme she began work with us, initially taking on evening and weekend shifts. Rebecca said “I found it hard work but I really loved it even though it was physically exhausting and you end up falling in love with the people you care for.” As she also suffers from anxiety, she discovered that helping others was actually helping her too.
Rebecca decided she wanted to move further in her career and learn more about the industry, particularly the rules and regulations. Acacia Homecare helped her to get started on the NVQ Level 2 Health and #Social Care course at West Thames College which she completed in 2017. She is currently studying her Level 3 in a distant learning course. During this time Rebecca moved to become a senior carer and is now our Field Care Supervisor.
In her new role, Rebecca continues to care for customers but also has the added supervisory responsibility of ensuring that other care workers are also providing care of the highest quality. She now, carries out assessments for new customers, starts their care and follows up on any customer and staff needs.
What does Rebecca like about working for Acacia Homecare? “I like the support I receive from Acacia Homecare and I prefer to work within this smaller environment, as I am not seen as a number but a valuable member of the team.”
Rebecca also says “… Acacia Homecare will support you if you show determination and want to develop your role.”
From care work to Field Care Supervisor, Rebecca now has her sights on Deputy Care Manager and Acacia Homecare will be there to support and encourage her through this process.

If you are interested in finding out more about #carejobs and working for Acacia Homecare, feel free to contact us at the details below or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AcaciaHomecare or Tweet us at @AcaciaHomecare.

Healthy lifestyle now to ensure a better lifestyle later.

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It is obvious. You eat well and stay fit now and tomorrow you will reap the benefits. In the developed countries especially we have seen the rise of an ageing population and it’s getting bigger still. People are living longer because we have access to instant medical care, pills for everything to keep that heart ticking longer. Becoming old means you slow down, your muscles and bones deteriorate, eyesight fades, the hearing goes, all those things that are taken for granted in our younger years are slowly fading away.

It doesn’t have to be like that. There are many articles out there already and the news pretty much has something about healthy living at least once a week. Acacia Homecare Franchise provides many elderly care services and we see the impact it has had on lives just because slight changes were not made in their former years. The burden and strain it has on the NHS and the families who are often the main carers isimmense and there is also the prospect of losing your home to either go live with family or move into a residential home.

Simple things we can all do now is by looking at the foods we it. I am a label reader – I check everything and with two young children I have reduced and near enough cut out processed foods from the shopping list. I was shocked to find how much sugar there is in a small pot of fromage frais, it is pretty much the first ingredient on the label (all the adverts for this particular brand was telling me it’s great for little bones! Hmm, what about their teeth??) . I switched to buying a natural yoghurt and giving my children a homemade fruit puree with it instead.
Cooking at home doesn’t have to be a chore. It can be quick and easy and you know exactly what it going in. There are plenty of online recipes’, so you don’t have to go out and buy expensive books and you can use every day ingredients – you don’t need to find exotic foods to make a simple, delicious and healthy dinner. Here are a few tips to help you on the road to a healthier eating:

Read the labels of the food you buy – if sugar and salt are in the first few ingredients, reduce the amount you eat of it or find an alternative.

Plan a weekly meal – there are thousands of free recipes online and ingredients don’t have to be expensive

Healthier snacking – don’t reach for those cheese and onion crisps, instead snack on vegetable sticks, olives, nuts or fruit.

Drink plenty of water.

Exercise the body and the brain – even a half hour brisk walk a day can help your muscles,

As a domiciliary care franchise we encourage independent living, by supporting the elderly and adults to live their lives how they want to.