Giving care at home

2016-05-10 06:00
The group of home-based caregivers from Ward 78.  PHOTO: Samantha lee

The group of home-based caregivers from Ward 78. PHOTO: Samantha lee

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A group of women working in the Beacon Valley area have had their praises sung by the locals.

The seven women are part of the City of Cape Town’s home-based caregivers and assist aged, frail and disabled residents within the ward.

The initiative is part of the Expanded Public Works Programme project, developed and implemented by the City’s Social Development and Early Childhood Development Directorate, says Suzette Little, Mayco member for the directorate.

“The programme commenced in 2014 and the community home-based care givers are trained to provide services to seniors who are frail and/or bedridden,” she says.

The project is being run in three wards in Mitchell’s Plain – Ward 78, Ward 79 and Ward 81.

“The wards were chosen as they were identified as priority wards in the area. The programme will not be run in other wards at this time, but will be considered in the new financial year,” says Little.

The primary responsibilities include:

. Identification of frail and bedridden seniors who require home-based support through door-to-door profiling,

. Assessment of clients’ needs,

. Respite relief for family members and care givers,

. Companionship,

. Reading,

. Light household duties, and

. Referral of client to specialist organisations for any hands-on medical support.

Christine Finch, a senior at the Beacon Vale Seniors club, says she appreciates the nurses’ efforts.

“They are very helpful and came to us to explain their duties and how they can help,” says Finch.

Another senior, Valerie Ditta, agrees.

“They are doing exceptional work in such a short time and we are expecting they will get many calls from people who need their help,” says Ditta.

One of the success stories of the group also include assistance in more serious matters.

A woman, who cannot be named due to the sensitive nature of the case, explains the caregivers, through the help of other officials, assisted her mother in the successful removal of an abusive family member.

“He would ask my mother for money and to avoid any trouble she would give it to him. I met the nurses at a shop and asked about the work that they do and they came to my mother and told her to take steps against him,” she says.

“The caregivers helped her get an interdict at the police station. He will be appearingin court on 1 July where he will face further charges for abuse and molestation.”

The home-based caregivers for this programme are not nurses, says Little. They are unemployed people interested in home-based care and were identified through the City’s job seeker database,” she says.

“These workers received five days of training on home-based social care and three days of first-aid training.”

People who are unemployed and interested in non-medical home-based social care can register on the job seeker database at their nearest subcouncil offices.

Previous home-based care training or experience is an advantage, but not a requirement.

V To enlist the help of the group, call the local district office on 021 444 2320 or 021 444 2926.

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