The residents are like part of my family now

member headshot

“I’ve been working in residential care for nine years as a care aide. I spend more time at my work than at home, so the residents are like part of my family now.
I like being able to make a difference in the residents’ lives, putting a smile on their faces, and knowing that they will be happy to see me the next day.
I feel like our residents and families appreciate the work that we do, and they are always thankful. So, that brings me joy and makes me want to do more for them.
I’m from Kosovo. My Mom worked as a nurse for over 20 years there, and my Dad was a teacher. So, they were always giving back to the community. In the times of war, my Mom would walk through the villages to give medication to her patients. 
Growing up that way, I wanted to be able to help people. So, that’s how I chose to get into health care.
In the early days of the pandemic, it was challenging because there was so much uncertainty and things kept changing every day. And you had families worrying about their loved ones. Not being able to visit them was hard for everyone, especially the residents. 
I got closer with the residents because all they could see for months was us. We were their family. It broke my heart when an outbreak hit our facility. 
I’m getting emotional just remembering it. I am also a single mother. During the outbreak at work, I didn’t see my son for over a month. My sister took care of him. He needed to go to school, and I didn’t want to be the reason the school had an outbreak.
Our members made so many sacrifices during the pandemic, incredible sacrifices, and they are the health care heroes, for sure.”
- Keta, Care Aide, part of the health care team