Visiting Angels bring independence to the elderly

Elizabeth Garvey and Visiting Angels maintain the dignity and independence of the elderly.

Elizabeth Garvey and Visiting Angels maintain the dignity and independence of the elderly.

Vicki Baker

Few situations are more stressful than having someone else’s well-being in your hands. That’s especially true when you’re providing home care for a member of your own family. As an untrained caregiver, the sheer weight of the responsibility is often overwhelming. That’s why it’s important to realize the toll that caregiving can take on family members. Elizabeth Garvey, client care coordinator for Visiting Angels, shared her personal experiences in caring for her ailing father with the Kiwanis Club at its August meeting.

Elizabeth Garvey first recognized the value and need for in-home care when her father developed dementia, and she and her mother became the primary caregivers. As the disease progressed, the care of her father became more and more burdensome. This was during a time when there were limited resources outside of hiring a live-in caretaker recommended through word of mouth or placement in a nursing home. Then Garvey discovered in-home senior care services.

Each day 8,000 Americans turn 65 years old. By 2030 there will be 72 million seniors in the U.S., and for many their daily care turns into a part- or full-time responsibility for the family. Many seniors want to maintain their independence and freedom by residing in their own homes but have lost the physical and/or mental capability to safely do so. The average family caregiver spends 20+ hours a week providing senior home care. This is especially troubling when many of these family caregivers are also juggling work, family time and social commitments. In the end this can be too much.

For seniors struggling with everyday activities, non-medical in-home care service agencies such as Visiting Angels provide the elder care, respite care, senior personal care and companion care needed so elderly adults can continue to live independently. In-home elder care satisfies the basic needs of hygiene, bathing, dressing, companionship, meal preparation, light housekeeping, medication reminders, incontinence care, transportation, errands and shopping.

Too often family caregivers sacrifice their own health and well-being in their attempts to meet the daily activities and needs of their aging parent or relative. In-home elder care gives parents and relatives family members the tools and time they need to live their own lives and provide peace of mind and support for the care and nurturing of their loved ones.

If you have the passion to reach out and help others, visit the Kiwanis Club Robson Ranch every first and third Friday at 8:30 a.m. in the Clubhouse. For more information contact Barbara Leurig  at