Friend With Caregiver's Heart Looks After Neighbor

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In 2000, Lawrence was standing on the porch outside his apartment door when he suffered a grand mal seizure. His girlfriend at the time dragged him across the concrete back into the apartment before calling 911, leaving him with permanent scars.

Lawrence, now 62, has suffered from epileptic seizures since early childhood and also is diagnosed with insulin-dependent diabetes and hypertension. He is prone to falls. After his seizure in 2000, doctors advised his daughter to move him into an assisted living facility or find a suitable caregiver.

His daughter called Shirley, a neighbor and friend who worked as a certified nurse aide (CNA) and qualified medication aide (QMA).

“We went and got him from the hospital, and I’ve been with him ever since — for 12 years now,” Shirley said.

CICOA Makes it Possible

As an employee of a home health agency, Shirley now gets paid to provide 21 hours of attendant care each week to Lawrence. She manages his medicine, gives him insulin injections, cooks and cleans for him, drives him to medical appointments, and more. Lawrence also receives home-delivered meals each weekday through CICOA.

With a caregiver’s heart, Shirley says she will always be a caregiver. Besides looking after Lawrence, she also checks in on her son and brother, who have cancer, and her mom, dad and sister with various health complications.

“Caregiving… that’s all I know,” she said.

“Shirley looks out for me,” Lawrence said. “It’s good to have her helping me out. And I’m thankful CICOA makes it possible.”

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