|March 2016 Winner,
Stanley Insurance Services
|Senior Helpers Best of Lakeland 2016
||2016 Home Care Pulse Award
Senior Helpers has taken a bold step by telling the world that age does not erase hopes and dreams. And by implementing the Virtual Dementia Tour companywide, Senior Helpers has further demonstrated its commitment to those it serves. Senior Helpers is proud to support Second Wind Dreams® on this mission by encouraging donations, raising awareness, and sensitizing the world to dementia as a corporate partner.
What is the Virtual Dementia Tour?
Learning to create a positive environment for those with dementia can only come from attempting to walk in their shoes. Created by P.K. Beville, a specialist in geriatrics, this valuable, easy to follow experiential tour is designed to instill hope in professional and family caregivers, providing them with a tool to move from sympathy to empathy and better understand the behaviors and needs of their loved ones and patients.
Interested in learning how you can bring the Virtual Dementia Tour to you?
Contact us today to help us and you learn more about changing the perspective on aging!
"Until There’s a Cure, Take The Tour!"
“CARE AND COMFORT AT A MOMENT’S NOTICE!”
IT IS NOT JUST A “TAG LINE”… IT’S THE WAY WE DO BUSINESS.
A word from our Owner and CEO, Jorge Giraldo:
Thank you for your interest in Senior Helpers of Lakeland/Polk County. Though it may feel uneasy enlisting the help of “strangers” to care for loved ones, Senior Helpers makes the process stress-free and comfortable with the utmost professionalism.
I think it might help you feel more comfortable with our care if you know more about us.
We have arranged for Home Care Pulse, an independent research company, to survey our clients – any client they wish, any time they wish. The results: Home Care Pulse recognized Senior Helpers as among the top 5% of home care companies whose clients were surveyed, evaluating client satisfaction in areas such as caregiver training, communication, overall quality of care, caregiver performance and responsiveness to problems … to name a few of the 12 measures. Summaries of these surveys are available upon request.
Yet another measure of the quality of our care involves a distinction that only eight percent of home care companies in the nation hold: accreditation by The Joint Commission. The standards to which we are held exceed those of the state Agency for Health Care Administration by verifying that we focus more effort on quality improvement rather than simply meeting minimum standards. Surveyors from The Joint Commission show up unannounced, review caregiver training and credentials, review care plans and caregiver notes, visit clients and interview them and their caregivers as part of an ongoing quality assurance program.
We are also a member of The Home Care Association of America. This membership demonstrates our commitment to our customers and to advancing the private duty home care industry. The Home Care Association of America helps enhance the strength and professionalism of private duty home care providers through education and best practices. They provide leadership, representation and education for the advancement of non-medical private duty home care and provide a strong unified voice to speak to the issues of concern within the private duty home care industry.
Pictured: Jorge Giraldo, Ginger Rayhock, Georgiana Smith, Chelsea Clark, Mindy Buikema, Savannah Prine, Ivanna Chiow and James Westdorp
And since we put our caregivers with YOUR FAMILY, we want you to know OUR FAMILY!
Pictured: Ivanna Chiow, Ginger Rayhock, Jorge Giraldo, Cindy Clouse, Eddie Navarez and James Westdorp
Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
JORGE GIRALDO, MBA, Certified Senior Advisor (CSA) ®, CEO/Owner
(Pictured: Jorge, Son-Giovanni and Wife-Nancy)
- Responsibilities: Jorge prides himself on creating a strong, service-minded, hard-working and efficient team. Jorge believes that each and every employee is important and treats everyone with respect and allows for input and ideas along the way. Creating a very good working environment is his number one priority, not only for the office staff but for the caregivers. Jorge is always looking for meaningful ways to continually reward his team and assist in their development. Jorge believes that a happy, well taken care of team will go above and beyond for clients, our community and each other. Jorge also enjoys the strategic nature of the business, he is always looking for ways to continue to help more in the community, whether it be through hands on skill building classes to care for those with Dementia or donating time, money and expertise to help our community.
- Education/Experience: Jorge has a Bachelor of Arts in Biological Sciences from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey and a MBA in Finance from Iona College/Hagan School of Business in New Rochelle, New York. He is also a Certified Lead Auditor and Certified Senior Advisor. Jorge is also a certified Senior Gems trainer and a certified Virtual Dementia Tour facilitator.
- Free Time Fun: They enjoy the beach, taking Giovanni to theme parks and having fun together! Traveling is also a passion of theirs as they look forward to exploring the United States as well as select locations around the world as the boys get older.
- Little Known Fact: Jorge met his father for the first time at the age of 28 and has formed a beautiful relationship with his father and two step-sisters! Jorge’s giving nature was in full effect when he took 1 month away from work in 2007 (before starting Senior Helpers) to help his father through the many appointments when he was diagnosed with Lung Cancer. His father survived those difficult times and Jorge was able to spend some quality time with not only his father but his two sisters forming a bond they wish they had from childhood. They could have been on Oprah with that wonderful reunion!
NANCY GIRALDO, RN (Director of Nursing)
- Responsibilities: Nancy serves as our Director of Nursing.
- Education/Experience: Nancy has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from College of Mount St. Vincent in New York.
- Free Time Fun: Nancy enjoys doing projects with Giovanni, going to the beach, taking Giovanni to theme parks and having fun together! Traveling is also a passion of theirs as they look forward to exploring the United States as well as select locations around the world as the boys get older.
- Little Known Fact: Nancy has a fraternal twin sister who is also a nurse!
And introducing the newest member of our team, Gabriel Giraldo. Born April 12, 2015! He continues to grow! Such a cute baby!
JAMES WESTDORP, Office Manager
- Responsibilities: James joined the team in 2013. He manages daily operations and projects for the office and field team. James is the office cheerleader, the problem solver, the chivalrous door opener, “jump in and make it happen” guy for our office.
- Education/Experience: In his first career, James served his country in the United States Air Force. He was deployed overseas several times for Operation Northern Watch, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. He had a very distinguished career in the military; his awards are too numerous to count. James was a trusted leader in many positions while serving, but one of his favorites was when he taught management for the Community College of the Air Force. He was retired in 2012 and is a disabled veteran. James also has an Associates of Science degree in Instructor of Technology and Military Science, an Associate of Science degree in Air Transportation and Business Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Management.
- Community Service: James is a mentor for kids through the Guardian Ad Litem program. He actively serves on several committees including the Annual Polk County Alzheimer’s Walk committee and Polk County Health and Medical Coalition.
- Free Time Fun: James enjoys worshipping/serving at his church and hanging out with his son, Logan. His daily goal is to “glorify God in all things I do.”
- Little Known Fact: He was a paid extra in a movie called “Taking Chance” starring Kevin Bacon.
GINGER RAYHOCK, Compliance Coordinator
(Pictured: Ginger and Sons, Pedro and Conner)
- Responsibilities: Ginger is responsible for all compliance issues. She makes sure that all of our caregivers are up-to-date on licensure, driver’s license, insurance, continuing education credits...etc.
- Education and Experience: Ginger has an Associate’s Degree in Health Information Technology from Kaplan University. She did her internship in our office. She was so talented, we just had to keep her!
- Free Time Fun: Ginger could really use some “free time” because she is the mom of two very busy little boys, Pedro and Conner! She can be found wrestling on the floor, watching a Disney movie or building a Lego village! But, when the boys go to bed, there is always time for an episode of “The Walking Dead”!
- Little Known Fact: She is a super couponer! She often shares her stories of bottles of laundry soap purchased for $.01 or Febreeze for FREE. She amazes us with her amazing couponing skills.
GEORGIANA SMITH, Community Relations Manager
- Responsibilities: Whether Senior Helpers’ assistance is needed 24/7 or just a few hours a day, Georgiana provides complimentary, in-home care assessments to determine what is best for the entire family. She enthusiastically represents Senior Helpers at health fairs, trade shows, training conferences, events, and senior community service functions.
- Education/Experience: With a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from the University of Florida and having been voted “Most Spirited Female” at Hernando High School, Georgiana has worked in banking, at an independent school, and in an assisted living facility.
- Community Service: Georgiana is a certified memory screener with the USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute and she is active with several senior service organizations including the Alzheimer’s Association, Better Living for Seniors, the CATT-Rath Senior Connections Center, and Polk FALA. She also volunteers with Geneva Classical Academy.
- Free Time Fun: Having played flute since grade school, Georgiana enjoys playing the favorites for seniors in assisted living facilities and skilled nursing centers including Christian hymns and patriotic songs. She loves spending time with her three children, her large extended family, and friends.
- Little Known Fact: Georgiana drinks way too much Mountain Dew
SABRINA LOPEZ, Client Services Manager
- Responsibilities: Sabrina is responsible for our overall client satisfaction. She introduces caregivers to new clients as well as completes new client assessments. She ensures each home has an updated plan of care as well as helps represent Senior Helpers at networking events.
- Education/Experience: Sabrina has an Associate's Degree in Health Service Administration and a BAS in Applied Management from Grand Canyon University.
- Free Time Fun: Sabrina enjoys spending time with husband, José, and their five daughters (Yes, 5 GIRLS!). As a family we enjoy going to the beach, trying new food, watching movies, spending time with family/ friends, and attending our awesome church!
- Little Known Fact: Sabrina loves anything that has to do with makeup. She learned everything she needed to know about makeup/makeup application from watching makeup tutorials on YouTube. Sabrina also had the privilege of applying her grandmother's makeup when she passed.
NATALIE POWELL, Scheduling Coordinator
- Responsibilities: Senior Helpers caregivers are at work seven days a week and around the clock. Natalie is responsible for assisting with the schedule and coordinating weekend and on-call caregivers. She also welcomes visitors with a warm smile at the front desk in our office.
- Education/Experience: Natalie attended Lake Gibson High School. She has an extensive background in customer service and caregiving including being a caregiver herself since 2012.
- Free Time Fun: When she's not busy at work helping our clients, Natalie enjoys shopping and time with her children. You'll often find her kicked back reading a good book or doing something creative with arts and crafts.
- Little Known Fact: Natalie is the assistant cheer coach for little league football. "Go Hurricanes!"
HOLLY SHEPARD, Scheduling/On-Call Coordinator
- Responsibilities: Senior Helper's caregivers are at work seven days a week and around the clock. Holly is responsible for assisting with the schedule and coordinating weekend and on-call caregivers. She also welcomes visitors with a warm smile at the front desk in our office.
- Education/Experience: Holly has 9 years of experience as a Certified Nursing Assistant for home health agencies and nursing homes. She enjoys being a part of elderly care.
- Community Service: Holly and her father occasionally sing at nursing homes throughout Polk County to entertain our elderly population.
- Free Time Fun: Holly likes to spend time with her three teenage daughters and enjoys riding motorcycles with her husband. When she is not attending Peak's Worship Church you can often find her singing karaoke.
- Little Known Fact: Holly likes to eat pickles dipped in peanut butter while she obsessively watches her "soaps."
HEATHER WARE, Human Resources Coordinator
- Responsibilities: Heather is responsible for recruiting and hiring all caregivers. She is also responsible for the onboarding/orientation sessions for incoming caregivers, per company standards.
- Education/Experience:Heather proudly served in the United States Navy onboard the USS McKee AS-41 from 1994 until 1997 installing, trouble-shooting, and programming the fiber optics for her ship and all the submarines the USS McKee assisted. After the military, Heather attended Polk State College and then Florida Institute of Technology before getting a Master's Certificate in Six Sigma from Villanova University.
- Community Service: Heather is very active in her church. She writes the weekly Sunday bulletin, assisting in the monthly food pantry, and running the church's kitchen. She can also be found assisting with the annual Trunk or Treat, Vacation Bible School, and Angel Tree.
- Free Time Fun: In her free time, you will find her with her husband and sons at a baseball game or at bible study learning the Word of God.
- Little Known Fact: Heather lived in Berlin, Germany and was there when the Berlin Wall came down.
CINDY CLOUSE, Dementia Educator
(Pictured: Cindy and Husband, Dan)
- Responsibilities: Cindy trains all of our caregivers on Alzheimer's/Dementia caregiving techniques using our Senior Gems program created for Senior Helpers by Teepa Snow, an expert on Alzheimer's/Dementia care.
- Education/Experience: Cindy joined our team in 2014 when as the owner of a small homemaker companion company, she decided to join forces with Jorge and the Senior Helpers of Polk County team. With a Business of Science degree in Business Administration, 20 years in corporate America and 5 years as a business owner, she brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team. She has been a Certified Senior Advisor since 2011, she is a certified Senior Gems trainer and Virtual Dementia Coach.
- Community Service: Cindy is actively serving with Better Living for Senior of Polk County. She first served on the Education Committee, then as the Education Chair. In 2011 she was nominated to the Board, serving first as Secretary and then as President for 3 years. She is now serving on the Board in an advisory role as “past president”. She also serves on the Advisory Council for RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program connecting seniors with volunteer opportunities), is Secretary for the non-profit Patchwork Memory Bridges (helping those with Alzheimer’s/Dementia lead more meaningful lives using their senses to awaken their memories) and is a Rotarian actively attending the Auburndale club.
- Free Time Fun: Cindy is married to the love of her life, Dan. She is a doting mom to three adorable cats…Oliver, Jaspurr and Espresso. And, she loves serving her Lord at First Missionary Baptist in Auburndale. She loves singing in the choir and on the worship team.
- Little Known Fact: In 2007, Cindy had the privilege of donating a kidney to her dad.
GINNY WOLFE M.A, Parkinson’s Educator
- Responsibilities: Ginny teaches the Parkinson’s Care Program to our caregivers.
- Education/Experience: Ginny has a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Adrian College and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Siena Heights College. She also has a certification in Non-profit Management from Case-Western Reserve University and a certification in Corporate Management from Harvard University. She has worked in educational and not-for-profit organizations her entire career...more years than she wants to admit she is alive!
- Community Service: Ginny has facilitated a Parkinson's Disease Support group for more than four years. She is also on the board on InnerAct Alliance, an agency which promotes youth making positive choices (not using drugs, alcohol, or bullying others), where she has served as president for two years. She is on the advisory council for RSVP, and participated in 'Leadership Winter Haven' through the Winter Haven Chamber of Commerce.
- Free Time Fun: Ginny says her hobbies are "many and expensive!" She knits and crochets, sells items in her Etsy "store", loves to cook ("and eat"). She also enjoys interior design, and reading. Ginny and her husband Steve like going to the beach, to theme parks, and museums. Ginny also enjoys traveling. She has been to 44 states and hopes to see the last remaining six soon!
- Little Known Fact: Ginny has an "international" family. Her daughter-in-law is Japanese, and she has nieces and nephews who are Chinese, Mexican, and bi-racial. Ginny says she "has her own melting pot." She also has four sisters and her husband has four brothers.
(Pictured: Owner, Jorge Giraldo and Teepa Snow)
In 2013 and 2015, we brought Teepa Snow, one of America’s leading educators on dementia, to Lakeland, FL. She has worked as a Registered Occupational Therapist for over 30 years her wealth of experience has led her to develop our Senior Gems® program.
As experts in Alzheimer's and dementia care, you can trust us to make your loved one's life, and yours, much easier and more enjoyable. If your elderly loved one is suffering from Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia, it can also take a tremendous toll on your own physical and emotional well-being. But with assistance from Senior Helpers, you don't have to go it alone.
We can create a customized home care plan that changes as your loved one's needs change. Our care team has extensive training and experience in providing the right level of individual care and support, while carefully monitoring everything from medication to daily activities. Our Senior Gems® approach is about creating a positive environment that focuses on what they can do, not what they can’t do.
Senior Helpers of Lakeland takes great pride in helping Veterans find the homecare benefits for which they are eligible. In addition, we honor our veterans for their service to our great country! We host veteran pinning ceremonies at client’s homes, facilities and even our office for our team. It is a way for us to let our veterans know their service for our country is still important to us and always will be.
(Pictured: (Left to Right)
Eddie Navarez, James Westdorp, Air Force Veteran and Jorge Giraldo)
(Pictured: James Westdorp presenting a certificate of appreciation to a resident of a Memory Care facility.)
Other fun times in the Senior Helpers Lakeland office. We have a great, hardworking team.
Chelsea at the Ridge Career Fair
Mindy & Chelsea at the CareerSource Polk Job Fair