Celebrating the Passion of our Caregivers

Caregivers Week, May 12-18 at Schlegel Villages

There is a certain level of pride that comes through when one speaks with a Schlegel Villages caregiver. As humble as they inevitably are in their modest acceptance of praise or gratitude for all they do in service of others, they are proud to make an impact.

In honour of Caregiver’s Week, we spoke with small number of random team members who took time out of their day to share their thoughts and have a little fun for the cameras.

The words they offered to explain why they choose to be in a caring profession echo the themes we so often hear, and illustrate why residents and loved ones almost always cite the team when asked what brings the Villages to life.  

“No matter what your role or how you contribute to our organization, you are the heartbeat of Schlegel Villages,” said president and CEO Jamie Schlegel in a message to all team members. “Your work . . . is incredibly important work for the health and vitality, not just of our residents, but also for our entire community.”

During Caregiver’s Week and always, we celebrate the gifts our team members offer every day.

I am a caregiver - Mary Baldwin“I wanted to give back and give to those who gave to us. I wanted to make a difference, make people smile, bring joy and laughter to the Village.” Mary Baldwin, Recreation

“I can offer emotional support and friendship that can truly have a significant, positive impact for the residents and for myself. Working with seniors, I’ve gained an insight to a lifetime of experiences and knowledge that have helped me to broaden my perspective of life.” Norelle Cuevas, Recreation

I am a caregiver - Susan Dayao“Being with the senior people reminds me of having my mother with me. The greatest lesson I’ve learned is to be patient, flexible and to be a good listener. Having these lessons, you will succeed whatever your objectives or goals are in life.” Susan A. Dayao, Housekeeping

“I choose to enjoy every single day. Every single day we are learning and earning residents’ trust, and that trust and honesty we use outside of the Village.” Gopa Patel, PSW

I am a caregiver - Amritha Haridas“I come from a joint family and being around seniors and taking care of them makes me feel at home. I care deeply for each senior I collaborate with, and do everything to help them live their best life.”  Amritha Vallikunnel Haridas, Recreation

“It’s amazing to work with seniors as you get to know some fascinating life values from them, as well as the way you should live your life. Working as a PCA is not only a profession, it’s a feeling to help those in need and to look after them. My strength is my motivation to do my role perfectly.” Anu Choudhary, PCA

“I was raised by my grandparents; that is why I love seniors, for their wisdom and kindness. I have learned from our residents to enjoy every day of my life, despite challenges. I have learned to not postpone my dreams and do it now!” Larysa Mikhnevych, Recreation

I am a caregiver - Dana Erksoussi“I have passion for taking care of people, especially those who are vulnerable. I am a hard worker and always willing to help; because of that, it helps me make sure my residents get the quality of care they deserve.” Dana Erksoussi, PCA

“I have always been interested in work that involved helping others and making a positive impact. Patience is one of my greatest strengths in providing a safe and comfortable atmosphere. As our world has advanced and changed, one thing has remained constant – the wisdom of our elders – and that makes me proud to work at Schlegel Villages.” Katleen Garcia, PCA

I am a caregiver - John Lloyd Cabading“I chose to work here because helping and making people happy and laugh is what makes me happy. A greatest lesson a resident told me is to always focus on your goals for you to be able to achieve, and I have been using that to keep me motivated.” John Lloyd Cabading, Food Services

“I believe patience is the key to succeed in this position; whenever I take care of the residents, I approach them with care and compassion.” Suvanthini Selvenosan, PCA

I am a caregiver - Lynda Waellering“I love hearing their stories and helping anyway I can. Seeing the smile on the faces of residents, hearing the laughter and sharing their sorrows. I get to give them everything I am and I get a ton in return.”   Lynda Waellering, Housekeeping

“To me, it is not work; it’s simply caring for people. Residents have taught me don’t sweat the small stuff and just treat everyone with kindness. I’m proud to work at Schlegel Villages because we are a family and support each other.” Brandy Douey, Neighbourhood Coordinator

“I love making people happy and I feel I can learn and grow. I love my job! The greatest lesson I’ve learned is to keep going and to never give up and keep on smiling, even when it’s cloudy.” Brianna Woollings, recreation

I am a caregiver - Mary Adewole“To care is to give hope and love to people. Residents feel confident with me around them; they feel safe and happy. The greatest lesson I have learned is that just a little goes a long way in people’s lives; kindness goes a long way and every stranger deserves kindness.” Mary Adewole PCA med-tech

“Working with older adults ended up being a happy accident. A recreation role opened up, I applied, and fell in love! Empathy towards residents, team members and loved ones is essential to having a deeper understanding of life at the Village.” Summit Mitterer, Recreation

“I chose to work in a caring profession because I have a passion for making a positive impact in people’s lives. The sense of community makes me proud to contribute to the well-being of our residents.”    Cristina Santos, Food Services

I am a caregiver - Dhruv Panchai“Politeness and patience are my greatest strengths. I will be grateful for everyone around me because residents are, all the time. One day I will be a resident and I will treat everyone the same way.” Dhruv Panchal, PCA