Caregiver of the Month: Sharon K. Advocates for Seniors
Advocating for seniors’ rights is an important aspect of in-home caregiving for Sharon K. After spending years caring for her own parents, she realized that she wanted to provide that same quality of care to seniors and people with disabilities within her community. She’s always felt that a lot of seniors don’t receive enough care and she believes we owe our seniors more than that.
Sharon wasn’t always a caregiver, but she’s always worked with people. For 15 years she worked as a catering manager, then as a property manager, and lastly as an accounting specialist. Her first caregiving position was with a single client in Alameda County and lasted almost 12 years.
Sharon’s first client was not a senior but a person with disabilities. The young man had been shot and was paralyzed from the waist down. Partly due to the care he received from Sharon, he was motivated to go to college. He and Sharon still keep in touch because Sharon always strives to treat her clients as if they were family members.
Caregiving with Alegre Home Care
After her client moved away, Sharon started working with Alegre Home Care and has been dedicated to her role there ever since. She adores her co-workers and especially the staff at the San Francisco office, which is the region where she does most of her caregiving. Even though she lives in Pittsburgh, she makes the commute to be there for her clients. It could be because she has a soft spot for the city — Sharon grew up in San Francisco and still calls it home.
Advocating for seniors’ rights is a priority for Sharon and she’s glad that her co-workers are on the same page. She knows that not everyone feels as passionately about seniors’ rights, but feels good knowing that Alegre Home Care does. The goal throughout the agency is the same: to provide quality in-home care services in order to help people maintain their independence and live their best lives.
Advocating for Seniors
When it comes to elder care, Sharon wants all seniors to receive the best possible caregiving services. Seniors have contributed so much to their communities and have paid their dues; they deserve to enjoy their senior years. Sharon feels that life is too short and wants to make people happy during their last days by showing them love and compassion.
She would like to see these intentions reflected in society as a whole, too. There needs to be more support for seniors, such as subsidies for in-home care services, more resources, more funding for senior living programs, and better access to health care. She sees the senior members of her own community struggle due to a lack of these things, which is why she wants to be part of the solution.
Sharon believes that caregivers, too, need better support. She would like to see more reputable agencies providing services, like Alegre Home Care, and for all caregivers to receive quality training. She wants people who enter the caregiving field to understand what is required and work together to secure better resources.
Even though she feels youthful, Sharon is approaching her senior years herself. She says not to worry, though, that she’s like "the little engine that could". Her positive energy is infectious and improves the lives of everyone around her. She’s also close with her children and knows she’ll be taken care of as she grows older because they were raised to have a caregiving mindset.
Providing Quality Elder Care
Sharon rarely misses a day of work and provides quality elder care to all of her clients. During COVID-19 she’s taken extra precautions and uses hand sanitizer, gloves, and face masks (yes, that’s right — she’ll even double up on the masks for added protection!). She’s the kind of caregiver who always goes above and beyond, because she truly cares. Alegre Home Care is certainly lucky to have her!