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Saskatoon CAREGiver Recognized with Canadian Top Caregiving Honour


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Home Instead Senior Care, the world's leading provider of in-home care services, has named Kristina Anderson, of Saskatoon, the Canadian CAREGiver of the Year.

Click below to listen to Kristina & Karen's interview on The Brent Loucks Show!

 0rsz_saskatoon_headshot.jpgKristina has been a CAREGiver with Home Instead for three years, though she has devoted her entire life to caring for others. The high-energy, dedicated and loyal “hockey-mom” stood out among hundreds of candidates for this prestigious accolade in Canada and is one of eight nominees who were considered for the Home Instead-wide North American CAREGiver of the Year award in Omaha.
 
“Kristina has a ‘wow-factor,’ which is why we have chosen her to represent our team this year,” said Karen Charyna, Owner of the Home Instead office serving Saskatoon. “The outstanding quality of her work, strength of her character and impact she has made in the lives of our clients and their families is a credit to her personality, dedication and skills. The past few months have been more challenging than ever for seniors and their families, and we are driven by the difference Kristina makes in the lives of seniors every day. She truly represents the ‘best-of-the-best’ at Home Instead.”

Kristina’s love for caregiving began as a young adult, when she was a care aide at a local hospital. A few years later, when Kristina’s mother was diagnosed with brain cancer, Kristina dedicated her working hours to becoming her mother’s primary caregiver, and her weekends were devoted to her family and kids. Today, Kristina uses her experience of caring for her mother to shape the kind of caregiver she is.
 
“I want family members all over Saskatoon to be able to enjoy every minute they have with their loved ones – this is easiest when they do not need to take on the responsibilities of being a caregiver,” said Kristina. “My goals as a CAREGiver are to better the quality of life for the entire family, affording family members piece of mind that their loved ones are being looked after every day – especially during recent months, when they are not able to see them in person.”
 
One week after Kristina became a CAREGiver with Home Instead, she began seeing Betty Lou, a 99-year old Home Instead client who lives in an assisted living home and has mid-stage vascular dementia. Instantly, Kristina developed a powerful bond of trust with Betty Lou. Because of this trust, Betty stays calm around Kristina’s presence and does not put up a fight when it comes to day-to-day care and her medication regimen. Every morning when Kristina arrives, the pair start the day off by playing a game, whether it is shuffleboard, cribbage or cards – talking and connecting, as friends do.
 
“Betty Lou’s children don’t live in Saskatoon, so they appreciate and rely on Kristina – not only for her care, but for the companionship and love she gives to Betty Lou,” said Charyna. “The family has complete trust in Kristina’s instinct about Betty Lou’s needs. During the pandemic, the pair have not been able to stick to their regular active routines. To compensate, Kristina brings birdhouses in to paint together, and the two of them take walks within the facility. Kristina delights in spending time with Betty Lou, and joyfully opens her heart each day to be that compassionate presence Betty Lou has come to rely upon.”
 
Outside of Kristina’s busy caregiving schedule, she enjoys spending time with her family, including travelling to Penticton, B.C., where Kristina’s 16-year old daughter resides playing elite-level hockey. Within Home Instead, Kristina dedicates her time to participating in community projects – such as Home Instead’s ‘Be a Santa to a Senior,’ a program encouraging donations and local community participation to offer companionship and a small gift to seniors in long-term care homes over the holidays.
 
CAREGivers provide older adults in-home care services such as companionship, meal preparation, light housekeeping, medication reminders, incidental transportation, errands and shopping, to help them remain independent and safe at home or in care communities. The letters ‘CARE’ stand for Changing Aging Through Research and Education®.
 
To learn more about Home Instead Senior Care or to find an office near you, visit www.homeinstead.ca.

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