Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Progress Asks: Top 3 Things In-Home Care Provides

senior in-home care, expert, elderly, caregiver
Progress Senior Care Manager Patrick Ridner has a personal connection to caring for seniors.

Progress Asks: What's the Top 3 Things In-Home Care Provides?

It's Tuesday, so once again Progress is giving you a peak into the world of senior care with our Progress Asks segment. Today, our guest blogger Progress Senior Care Manager Patrick Ridner will provide a list of some of the major aspects of in-home care through the services Progress Inc. provides.

 Patrick has a heart for the communities we serve. The Middle Tennessee native said his grandfather's passing more than a year ago, opened his eyes to the need for care at home.
"My grandfather passed away two days before I got the job here," Patrick said. "He had been in a nursing home, but if we would have known about something like Progress, he could have been cared for at home. It seems like people know they're there to die at a nursing home."

Working at Progress means he can give families an opportunity his family didn't have. He enjoys interacting with his employees that work in the homes and getting to know the people Progress supports. It's hard to know exactly when someone could utilize in-home care, but Patrick has one piece of advice

 "When a person loses a certain amount of independence, (like they need help with cooking or cleaning), our services are beneficial. That's when we can come in and make the difference."

With in-home care, caregivers can provide a personal touch and add much more to the lives of the people they support, Patrick said.

Here's the TOP 3 Thing Patrick suggests in-home care can provide:

COMPANIONSHIP: The interaction between our senior care attendants and the seniors is often the best benefit for them. We have one person that goes to her church with her senior care attendant. Another loves to go to yard sales with her caregiver. It's all about having someone there rather than being alone for the time their family can't be there.

TRANSPORTATION: Many of our folks need to make it to doctor's appointments, grocery stores and other places, but they don't drive anymore. We get them there and wait with them as long as they need us.

CARING FOR HOME: Sometimes it's difficult for seniors to make meals, do laundry and clean their homes like they once did. Our senior care attendants provide light housekeeping, prepare meals, prepare grocery lists and handle other domestic duties for the people we support.

Let us know what you think about Patrick's blog in the comment section below:

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Progress Asks: Is your Elderly Loved One Depressed?

Progress Inc., elderly, elder care, Progress
Depression in the elderly community often goes unnoticed. - Courtesy of www.caregiverstress.com .

Progress Asks: Is your Elderly Loved One Depressed?

When caring for an elderly parent or sibling, ensuring their basic needs are met is quite challenging. However, along with caring for the practical needs - feeding, clothing and personal hygiene - the emotional needs of your loved one are also important. In today's Progress Asks' segment, we look at some of the warning signs that could greatly affect the emotional and mental health of your spouse, parent or other loved one.

 According to the NIH, some of the changes and life events you may notice are:

  • Adapting to a move from home to an apartment or retirement facility
  • Chronic pain
  • Feelings of isolation or loneliness as children move away and their spouse and close friends die
  • Loss of independence (problems getting around, caring for themselves, or driving)
  • Multiple illnesses
  • Struggles with memory loss and problems thinking clearly

Look for the signs that an older loved one may be depressed and need help:

  • Being more confused or forgetful.
  • Eating less. The refrigerator may be empty or contain spoiled food.
  • Not bathing or shaving as often. Visitors may notice smells of urine or stool. Clothes may be dirty and wrinkled.
  • Not taking care of the home.
  • Stopping medicines or not taking them correctly.
  • Withdrawing from others. Not talking as much, and not answering the phone or returning phone calls.
For more information on this topic, visit our website www.progress-inc.org/senior.html to find out some of the ways we can assist you in caring for your loved one.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Camp Progress: Moments & Milestones from Summer Camp

A great summer with some amazing kids came to an end last week!

Take a peak at how Ian, Randall and the other kids shared moments and milestones at Camp Progress.

We also had great support from the folks at West End Middle, SugarCreek Carriages, Kroger in Belle Meade,  Moe's in Belle Meade and, of course, our wonderful volunteers like Blaine from Centennial Sportsplex, Chris and Terri who all added the much needed viable activities and programs for our young people. We also thank our fearless Progress team led by Lanitta Joseph.

Want to make sure your child with an intellectual disability has a super summer next year?

Contact Meika McClendon at m.mcclendon@progress-inc.org for details on Camp Progress 2014.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

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in-home care, senior care, disability services

Welcome to the Morning Minute!



We're planting new gardens at Progress - both literally and figuratively!

A couple of years ago, a companion at Progress spearheaded 

the effort to raise money and build some beautiful 

planter boxes. It was a project completed, planted,

and maintained by several people whom we support 

and their companions.The harvest was bountiful

 and beautiful! 

The following year, 

circumstances had changed for many of those involved, and sadly, those boxes remained unplanted.

This year, happily, they will be filled again with

 tomatoes and peppers and squashes!

(I also built new garden boxes at home this year. My early greens included arugula...yum!) 

Did you know you can make delicious pesto 

in your blender or small chopper/food 

processor with 20 or so arugula leaves, 

a handful of walnuts, garlic as you like it, salt, 

shredded Parmesan  and olive oil? 

Toss it with pasta or make a pesto, tomato, 

mozzarella crostini...or any way you like to use pesto!)

Progress Inc., healthy, garden, veggies


We find that our plans and projects 

and priorities in many areas often 

times have varying schedules for fruition, 

just like those garden boxes. Front and center for us right now:

  • SMART!

    We are very close to securing a location for our art reuse center SMART! Scrap Made Art. We have several storage units full of amazing and inspiring donations, we have grant requests on the desks of potential funders, and we've talked it through with our Board and our Bank. We're excited!!

    If you know of great warehouse space, 3000-5000-sq. ft. that is affordable (by non profit standards), contact SMART! Project Manager Kelli Monday at k.monday@progress-inc.org.


art reuse, Nashville, upcycle, recycle, repurpose


     We are looking for nominations of community-minded leaders over the next 18 months to round out our board.  We are particularly hoping to recruit people who are invested in and connected to the arts and elder care communities. An attorney with anspecial interest in non-profits would also complement our board. If you would like to nominate yourself or someone you know, please e-mail me at d.goodaker@progress-inc.org


We're offering our first summer day camp for children with intellectual disabilities ages 10-22 from June 3-July 12. There's still a few days left to register for this full-day camp (8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.), which will include music therapy, art therapy ,tennis clinic , gardening, trips to Centennial park, Sportsplex, and many others. For more information contact, Meika McClendon at m.mcclendon@progressinc or visit http://www.mnps.org/Page107013.aspx.

_ Donna Goodaker
Executive Director, Progress Inc.

Progress Achieve: Comcast Crew

Progress Ambassador/Office Manager Lanitta Joseph introduced the ACHEIVE program in January. ACHIEVE most recently recognized  the determined group of clients that refurbish more than 160 XFINITY remotes every week - that's nearly 650 every month. They work diligently and with pride. Lanitta honored them with a pizza party and keepsake certificates. Congrats, ALL!

The Golden Years - Fun, Food & Fitness

The Progress Senior Services Division had a wonderful first time event last month, Golden Years, a health & fitness expo! Huge thanks to HCA Healthcare and The Home Depot for there support of The Golden Years!

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Progress Asks: What FREE Resources Are There for Senior Caregivers?

Progress Asks returns to pose a question that many caregivers probably don't think about day to day, but is important to know: 

Q: What free resources are there for senior caregivers?

A:There are several resources online, such as caring.com and caregivingcafe.com  that give useful tips and other resources about staying healthy, being mindful of elderly care and providing the best care to whomever you support. 

However, for those searching for face to face-to-face opportunities. The upcoming "So your loved one has Alzheimer's...A Journey for Caregiver's," which will be held July 23 at Trevecca Community Church, is the perfect opportunity to interface with Nashville's senior caregiving community and other elder care experts. The best part of the seminar - It's FREE! Register here for this open seminar for caregiver's brought you by the Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee.

Join Us Tuesday, July 23!

Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee presents the "So your loved one has Alzheimer's...A Journey for Caregivers" conference on Tuesday, July 23 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Trevecca Community Church in Nashville. This seminar is FREE to all caregivers and lunch is provided at no cost. Respite care is also available at no cost. 

Click here to print a brochure.


9:30-10 a.m.         Registration

10-10:10                 Opening Address   
(Diane Gramann, LAPSW, ACSW)

10:10-10:30           Caregiver Perspective 
(Genma Holmes)

10:30-11:30           Understanding Stages and 
(Mary Harkleroad, LCSW)

11:30-12:30           Lunch

12:30-1:00            Alzheimer's, Dementia and 
(Video of Dr. William Petrie)

1:00-1:45                Panel Discussion:
Staying at Home Safety

      • Driving 
(Christy Horner) 
      • Home Modifications   (Jason Biddle)
      • In-Home Care  (Nancy Pertl)   

 1:45-2:30             If Home is no longer an option.... 
(Maribeth Farringer, 
  Diane Gramann, LAPSW, ACSW)

Presented by:
For more information, visit us online at www.mhamt.org

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Progress Asks: What Makes Your Caregiver Right For YOU?

Progress is starting a new Progress Asks series. Every Tuesday, we'll ask a question that Progress and other fellow senior care experts have answers for.

From our friends at Care In the Home www.careinthehome.com:
seniors, elderly, care, in-home care

To remain active and independent in your own home

It sounds simple, but as our bodies age it can become a very difficult task.  The best approach to finding a good caregiver is to focus on two separate goals:
1) Satisfying the basic needs.
The skills of the caregiver must match the needs of the client at all times.  Suppose a client needs help in the morning with bathing, grooming, toileting, dressing, taking medications, making breakfast and some light cleaning and laundry.  The first priority is to insure that the client receives these physical services in a safe, efficient, professional and dependable manner.  Often referred to as Activities of Daily Living (ADL), this is the physical work that allows a client to remain indepent in their own home.  At Care in the Home, our clinical case manager performs a full needs assessment before services begin and keeps a detailed care plan updated throughout the course of service.  
2) Finding the personality fit.
Once the basic physical needs met, the fine tuning comes in finding a caregiver that "clicks" with the client.  Meeting with the client and family before service begins helps our case manager get a sense of what personality traits in a caregiver would best fit with the personality of the client.  When a client and caregiver click, it is wonderful but it can take some trial and error before that fit is achieved and it may never be as perfect as we would like.  Much depends on timing and what caregivers are available when a client is searching.  Having patience and keeping an eye always on the primary goal of independence in the home is essential in this part of the process. 
In addition, it is important to realize that a search for a caregiver is actually a search for a teamof caregivers because caregivers get sick, need vacation and must live their own complex and challenging lives like anyone else.  Experiencing good service from two, three or more caregivers can develop a trust for the team of caregivers that a company employs.  A client can then feel confident that any replacement sent will be competent and wonderful in their own way.  That might actually be the best kind of perfect.