After taking 5 years off to stay home with her young daughters and attend school, Aster Gebre recently resumed work as a caregiver with Family Resource. She’s excited about having completed her pre-requisites so that she can now apply to nursing school, and she’s pleased to again be doing caregiving with seniors. “Of course we all work to have money,” said Aster, “but to be a good caregiver you have to do it for more reasons than just that. I do it out of love and respect, and because helping others makes me feel like I am doing something useful. It just makes me feel good,” she says.
Aster is originally from Ethiopia and moved to Seattle with her family 12 years ago. She believes that her interest in geriatrics stems from her upbringing. “We were raised to have respect for our parents and grandparents, and care for them” she says. “It is something that is natural in my culture.”
Aster currently works short shifts of 2-3 hours with four clients per week. She believes that it is very important to help the client the way the client wants to be helped. “I think it is important to listen to the client and learn how they want things done. With some clients, especially those with dementia, it can be hard to know what they want but I learn from experience. It is also important to be patient when you work with the elderly,” Aster continues. “Sometimes a client might be upset and yell at you but you have to not take it personally. You have to be patient, very kind, honest and friendly.”
“I am so happy that Family Resource hired me back,” she says. “They are a good company. They listen to the caregivers. I can talk openly and they listen and don’t judge. Of course they care about the clients, but they care about the caregivers too.”