Dignity and pride. That is what Angela, Home Helpers’ Caregiver of the Quarter, strives to create and preserve every time she goes to work.
Angela joined Home Helpers of Hinsdale 9 years ago after spending several years working in assisted living. She has grown to love her job, as well as the people she cares for. She describes herself as a “warm and fuzzy” caregiver, and her affection is evident in the way she refers to her clients as “my Joe” and “my Rose.”
Angela said one way she fosters dignity and pride in her clients is by offering choices. She gives them the power to decide what is for dinner or what they will wear that day. And she always remembers that she is a guest in their home.
This line of work comes with heartbreak. After nine years with one client, Angela felt the loss when he died at age 98. Angela said she approaches this negative of the job with gratitude for whatever time she is privileged to spend with each client.
“I learn so much from them,” she said. She’s learned about history, about how to live and how to live better.
A mother of two, Angela describes herself as a “helicopter mom.” That protective nature is something that spills over into her job.
“I just love people,” she said. In fact, when Angela is not working, she frequently helps a neighbor who is dealing with diabetes.
Senior Care Manager Michelle Pantoja said Angela’s genuine affection shows in the way she interacts with her clients.
“Angela is a pleasure to work with. She is very reliable and just so skilled,” Pajtoja said.
Not only do her clients love her, her clients’ families love her too, Pantoja said.