Thrilling first for inaugural Care Ambassador
IT TAKES more than health issues to make Thelma Forbes take a step back from a lifetime of caring for others.
After more than 10 years as a caregiver at Home Instead, Thelma has been appointed as the office's first Care Ambassador.
"I'm honoured to be the first Home Instead Senior Care CAREAmbassador,” Thelma said.
"It's so rewarding to be able to give back to the community and provide continual support to caregivers.
"Through my role, I hope that the network of caregivers can continue to grow and learn how to give the best level of care to their clients.”
Thelma's tasks will see her as a mentor for the office's caregivers, participating in meetings and assisting newsletter production.
Formerly a Registered Nurse, she became a caregiver at Home Instead Senior Care East Brisbane after nine years of retirement.
It happened after one of her daughters spotted a Home Instead advertisement in the local newspaper, and Thelma decided to apply.
She relished the role which gave her the flexibility to maintain her passion for travel with regular visits to friends in the United States.
Hard work, efficiency and loyalty to clients, won Thelma numerous awards during her time with Home Instead, including CAREGiver of the Year in 2011.
One of the office's highest-qualified caregivers, she also has a Grad III and Certificate III as a Dementia Care Specialist.
Among Thelma's favourite activities with clients are reviving old memories and creating life journals or scrapbooks with clients for their families and to maintain connections to their past.
A mother of five children and grandmother to 17, family and caring for others has always been a core part of her life.
Thelma said her age and life experiences were two of her greatest caregiver assets.
Since there was sometimes not much difference in the age of the client and herself, she said she could easily relate and create a rapport for a better understanding of their situation.
Although health issues have resulted in Thelma's retirement again, she still provides after-hours support to clients and caregivers on weekends.
Home Instead is a community care organisation committed to helping you navigate your journey as a CAREGiver with a variety of senior care resources.