Many elderly become homebound at the end of their lives. While they may have other outside help, there are many things that you can do as a volunteer. Here are nine things you can do to serve these people.
1. Help them write a family history. Even if you only have an hour here and there, take the time to go and chat with them. You can also do this over the phone, though personal visits are always appreciated. Write down what they say and type it up on the computer. You can then turn it into a book for family and friends. Here is a great list of 150 questions you can ask. Print it and take it with you in case you get stuck.
2. Bring a meal. Live-in caregivers get exhausted and meals are always welcomed. Make sure you find out any dietary restrictions first.
3. Read a book together. Choose a book and bring it to your new friend. You can either read it out loud or you can each read it separately and discuss it.
4. Take them to appointments. Offer to drive them to medical appointments, dentist appointments, or even to go get their hair done. Make sure their health is stable enough and find out what to do if there is a problem on the road.
5. Help with housework. You can do heavy lifting, shovel snow, clean the house, do yard work, whatever they need.
6. Offer to run errands. If you are already out, give the caregiver a call and ask if they need any groceries or other items.
7. Give them the opportunity to serve. Many homebound seniors feel useless. There are many things they can still do to serve others. They can:
8. Decorate their home for holidays. You can make some homemade decorations (great to do with children), or set up decorations they already have. Bring fresh flowers or live plants often to freshen the air and to bring some of the outside in. They don't get outside very often, so this is especially appreciated.
9. Put on a mini concert, poetry reading or play. Choose a date, gather some friends, and make a plan. It doesn't have to be anything long, complicated, or professional. Simply take the time to add some excitement to their day.
As you do these nine things, you will bring joy to the homebound with home care assistance and to yourself.Share
3 December 2014
My name is Katie Langer. For a long time, I was bed ridden and I felt like I had no control over my life. I simply went along with what was instructed by my doctor and I didn't ask questions. It wasn't that my doctor wasn't willing to work with me, but I preferred to simply not think about the illness I was suffering from. I didn't realize that some of the symptoms I was suffering from were side effects of my medication and were not normal. After communicating more with my doctor, I was able to alleviate my symptoms. Since then, I've taken an interest in patient-doctor relationships and how to improve them.