She goes on to
relate that at times it was only at the funeral of
some residents that staff learned they had relatives.
Others become aggressive with age which makes it
difficult to handle them. She says that what old
people need above all else is love. "It doesn't have to be anything big. Just
someone to sit and talk with."
Daniel and Sobhion are unanimous that it takes considerable
reserves of love and patience to work with the elderly.
It is a vocation as much as many other. Something to which
one is called and for which one must have a special love.
It is not a calling to be taken lightly.
Sobhion adds: "Someone at work always does or says something
to make you laugh." Says Daniel: "You may come to work
heavy-hearted and you may hear something that makes you
forget your troubles."
The home today operates three shifts on a 24-hour basis.
Breakfast is served around 8:00 am after the 7:00 am shift
has taken up its duties. At the same time, staff toilet,
clean and tidy and residents. After breakfast, bedrooms
are cleaned, linens are changed etc.
According to Daniel
and Sobhion, most residents are up by 9:00 am and are
in the TV room by 10:00 am At 10:00, residents are led
in the Rosary by volunteers from the neighboring St. Finbar's
Parish and this is followed by snacks. The mid-morning
period is also the time for activities such as sewing,
singing, exercise and painting.
These sessions are conducted
by staff or volunteers. Lunch is generally served by
12:15 pm after which it is time to help residents clean-up
after lunch and prepare themselves for an afternoon nap.
The last meal of the day is served at 5:30 pm , by which
time the 1:00 pm shift has taken over.
For health care, the home is served by three physicians,
Drs, Phillip, Assing and Low Chew Tung. It also receives
weekly visits from a psycho-geriatric nurse. Residents
attend medical clinics according to their various needs:
Eye, Psycho-geriatric, Orthopedic and Surgical out patients'
clinics at the Port of Spain General Hospital and the Health
centre in Diego Martin.