Can you tell me a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
My name is Brenda.. I’ve been living in San Francisco all my life and working as a caregiver for over 40 years and retired as a CNA for 20 years. I became a caregiver because I like taking care of people and helping people with their personal needs. I enjoy seeing people happy when they’re sick. I like to be a part of their life.
Who is the first client that comes to your mind?
There was a client I’ll never forget; his name was Steven. I enjoyed taking care of Steven. He liked to get out of the house. I would take care of his wound, put him in his wheelchair, and take him up to Fort Miley. He would go out talking to the other guys up at Fort Miley and they would just sit there and shoot the breeze and have lunch. Steven didn’t have any family, so he would come over to my house for dinner. I’d take him over to my house for holiday BBQ and to my family gatherings. He enjoyed it so much.
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver is to give all you have to give to your client. Most of all love, because they need to feel like they are loved by somebody.
What makes you a good caregiver?
I'm patient and I'm compassionate and I love to take care of people. I take care of people the way I want to be taken care of.
What is your proudest moment as a caregiver?
The moments that make me proud as a caregiver are when I hear a client say that they’re proud of me and that they appreciate me. That’s my goal -- to make them feel that way.