Lorett Chan_SSIC (1)

I Wanted to Make a Difference

Caregiver Story: Lorett Chan

Lorett was hired as a caregiver at Shepherd’s Staff In-home Care on October 7, 2011, just two months after we officially opened our doors. She has worked continuously ever since, making her SSIC’s most senior caregiver. She recently reminisced about why she came to work for us. This is her story.

I came from a legal secretary background, where I worked in a law firm in Jamaica, West Indies (where I am from), then in New York City, and then in Washington, DC.

As things changed in how I did my work, I began to feel disconnected from my job but did not know what to do about it. It never occurred to me to quit but, it also became very apparent that I could not continue. I started getting panic attacks on my way home for no reason. After much debate with myself, I resigned, without any plan for my future. I knew, though, that I did not want another office job.

At that time, the biggest news being discussed was the abuse of seniors in nursing homes, and even in their own homes. A co-worker had a caregiver for her mom and used to tell me that I would make a good caregiver. In my mind, that meant taking care of seniors and making their families not have to worry.

One day, I saw a feature article in the Frederick News-Post about Angela and John Martin and their new company, Shepherd’s Staff In-home Care. It talked about their difficulty with finding quality care for Angela’s Mom, and that the reason for them starting their business was to implement the things that could be better. The story resonated with me, and even though I had no prior experience, training was being provided, so I contacted them. Meeting them, and hearing their story touched me in a way that I felt I had to give it a try. I, too, wanted to make a difference.

The ideals that Shepherd’s Staff embodies have not changed from its inception and are a testament to the staff that they hire, and the care that they offer to their clients.

I never wanted to be a nurse, but I loved certain aspects of making people feel comfortable and cared for, often just with a smile. I always felt that if I can hold someone’s hand, they would feel my compassion. That was the main reason I felt drawn to caregiving. I felt that with so many electronic gadgets in our lives today, we had lost the value of human contact and I wanted to help bring that back. 

It has been 11 years, and I feel the same as I did when I began. I feel like I am doing important work and making a difference in the lives of our clients and their families.

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