We spoke to Private HomeCare’s Carer of The Year 2019, Susan Taylor, to find out what it takes to be a good carer, and what winning Carer of The Year means to her.
My sister is a nurse so that’s how I became interested in the field initially. Then once my son turned 10, I was able to return to the workforce. Being a carer works for me as I can choose my own hours. I also love the flexibility it offers. Private HomeCare place carers in their local area so its close to home.
I like looking after people, being able to help someone who is in pain and thinking that I can help to improve their situation.
Definitely born! I think a good carer needs to enjoy their work and have great empathy.
I employ carers to look after my son, so I can see the client side too.
No one wants strangers in their home so I can see why a lot of people don’t want carers. But I find that even after a couple of weeks, they notice the bit of help and appreciate it, even if it’s just making a cup of tea.
I find most carers brilliant and have been blessed with the carers I have worked with in my own personal experience.
I would say be empathetic and tactful. When I go into a new client, I ask them what they want me to call them, to help them feel comfortable. I think it is important to ask them what they want, not be pushy and give them time to get used to you.
For some clients employing a carer means they are losing their privacy, so I think it is important to build that relationship over time and respect their privacy. It’s all about helping them and offering companionship.
Being a carer is just like real life. Sometimes you do and sometimes you don’t. I had a client for ten years who died, and I am still in touch with their family seven years later. When he died it was like a family bereavement.
It was brilliant! I have been working with Private HomeCare for twenty years and won Carer of the Month for December 2019. I went to the 30th anniversary celebrations to see who I knew there, and to meet up with other carers. I couldn’t believe it when I won. It felt embarrassing at the time, but it also gave me a great lift.