Hanson Services was honored to receive an endowment in memoriam of former clients, Mae Hoffman and Nettie Umans. The endowment, established in 2014, recognizes and supports those who dedicate themselves to caring for older adults. In the words of Steve Umans, son and nephew:
The Mae Hoffman/Nettie Umans Memorial Award for Caregiver Excellence was established by the family of Mae Hoffman and Nettie Hoffman Umans both to honor their memory and to express our deepest appreciation for the caregivers who contributed immensely to the quality of their lives as they reached the stage of life where help was needed.
In 1988, after her husband Sam passed away, Nettie moved into an apartment in the same building in which Mae had lived for many years. They had always been close and, although they both appreciated having their own space in their individual apartments, at that point they became inseparable. The photo on the left was taken at a joint birthday party in the party room of their apartment building; Nettie (on the left) age 95 and Mae 100.
In 2007, following a fall, it became clear that Mae would require help if she were to remain in her own apartment and the sisters talked about moving together to an assisted-living facility. Thanks to an advertisement heard on WCLV, her family decided to explore the option of in-home care provided by Hanson Services. It became clear almost immediately that home care would enable Mae to remain comfortably and safely in her apartment with an undiminished quality of life. She and Nettie continued to visit and spend time together every day and Nettie no longer worried that Mae might fall or need help in other ways.
As time went on, Nettie too required home care and the degree of care which each required increased; shopping, cooking, dressing and bathing as well as doctor visits, hair appointments, etc. Thanks to a wonderful team of aides, the care was available as needed, and ultimately, both Nettie and Mae remained in their apartments until they passed away; Nettie at age 96 in 2011 and Mae on her 104th birthday in 2013.
The untold story here is that of the caregivers. They are the “unsung heroes” who not only provided such loving care to Mae and Nettie but also greatly comforted those of us who loved them with the knowledge that they were safe in good hands and receiving the best care possible. What was remarkable is that the care which Mae and Nettie received went far beyond initial expectations; it was clear that the caregivers treated Mae and Nettie as if they were valued members of their own families.
It takes remarkable women and men to perform this service. The work is certainly not glamorous and it is typically performed “behind the scenes” with relatively little recognition. Yet, there are few occupations that make such an impact on the quality of life at a time when it is most needed. As a family who has seen this impact first hand, we are pleased to participate in this ceremony to honor all caregivers and to express to them our most sincere thanks.
2014 Award Recipients:
- First Pace- Galina Kusmiy
- Second Place- Ieshia Dixon
- Third Place- Hope Manuelle
- Jayne Golden
- Rose Barfield
- Olena Gordova
- Larissa Logan
- Yelena Melnik
- Ivanka Scott
- Diana Zaho