This week, I will highlight another community partner. This time, I have selected Home Instead. When picking any type of provider, obviously you must pick the best for you, your family and your situation. My opinions today are based on a number of years of working with Home Instead, on community committees, as a recipient of services, as a viewer from afar, and now as a senior serving agency.
Caution, personal opinions just ahead! The reason Home Instead is successful, in our community is as simple as two words, Ken Hendricks. By title, he is the Community Service Representative for Home Instead. By definition, he is a walking billboard of kindness, compassion, attention to detail and service beyond expectation.
www.GoodReads.com credits, John Wooten with saying, “The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching”. Now I can neither confirm nor deny that Mr. Wooten knows Mr. Hendricks, but here is what I do know. Ken is that great kind of person that you are happy to see anytime your paths cross. He makes everyone feel comfortable and valued for their time. He really appreciates his staff and cares for his patrons.
He spends time in our Adult Day Services program, playing music when his schedule permits. I have seen him play his guitar at a funeral for the family member of a local woman who serves thousands of people every year. He works to educate community agencies, organizations and programs on what Dementia can look like in everyday situations. He does it so he can bring some common understanding to an issue that affects many people throughout this community.
I came to know Ken as a member of the Community Health Council. I grew to know him as a volunteer with the Festival of Trees fundraiser, which benefits youth and senior programs. Then, I came to know Ken and his staff, when life turned on a dime with the health of my mother.
The level of angst was enormous when my job was impacted by a lot of change in a short period of time. Many times I opened my front door to be greeted by a daily caregiver that I knew from the community.
When my mother finally did pass, I saw Ken again, at the same Community Health Council meeting where I met him many years before. I walked past, bent down and quietly whispered, “I couldn’t have done it without you.”
Today, I work with Ken and Cynthia to teach the Dementia Friendly Community. When you get down to it, it really is a small world. To schedule a free, Dementia Friendly Community presentation, call Ken Hendricks at 505.471.2777 for information.