American Senior Alliance salutes those who have sacrificed their families and personal health in order for our older Americans to enjoy another wonderful day. We know the resources are tight in caring for seniors, but experiencing the joy in helping others means more than a hefty salary ever will. Whether it is an occupational therapist, chef, nurse or physician, the answer is always the same when asked why they chose a career to care for the elderly. They do it because they were called to serve.
We asked Joyce Robinson, an administrator for an assisted living community, why she choose her profession. Mrs Robinson said, “It is definitely a calling. I didn't know it when I was a little girl, but I would pick flowers in the neighborhood and take them to our older neighbors. Once I handed them the flowers, I would sit for hours and just listen to their stories.”
Currently, we have 46 million Americans 65 and older and another 10,000 more turning 65 every day. Those numbers will continue to rapidly grow over the next several decades, so showing great appreciation for all of the wonderful people working in elder care should be greatly appreciated.
As we walk the halls in long term care communities and skilled nursing facilities, we can see the thrill in the eyes of the medical personnel. They know they are truly improving the lives of those they are responsible for. In addition to communities and facilities, in-home caregivers bring so much joy to our vulnerable seniors by just being there for them. Laura Smitherman was introduced to in-home senior care giving by her pastor. Ms. Smitherman said, “I enjoy sharing my life with senior citizens because it brings me great happiness being that special friend in need.”
One of the reasons that nurses continue being the most trusted profession is their wonderful attitude, dedication and trust. Our recent blog post reported a Gallup poll that showed nurses topping the professional list as the most trusted profession for the 17th year in a row. Putting others first before their own personal needs for the 17th year in a row is a huge sacrifice, but it is what helps build their patients trust giving nurses the edge over other professions.
The US Census reported in 2018 that for the first time in our nations history older adults are projected to outnumber children by 2030. We are forever grateful for all of those who have chosen this beautiful path.
Even though Careers in Aging Week is the first full week of March, we believe we should celebrate and recognize those industry professionals for the whole month of March. We see the commitment and the sacrifices often and know many of our older Americans wouldn't enjoy quality living without those who provide extraordinary support. With our aging population growing exponentially, it is vital to bring greater awareness to the many opportunities available in the field of aging. Please join us in recognizing the wonderful people in this amazing field that often go the extra mile to help extend the lives of our aging population.