Providing care for the elderly, terminally ill or Disabled family member is more of a
calling than an actual career. It is a selfless vocation which demands both training and
Daily activities include bathing, feeding, grooming, cleaning and taking
medicine to offering companionship and overseeing their physical health, emotional and
safety needs. Since not everyone is cut out to do such responsibilities, it requires one to
give their best so as to be effective. While we can have intensive training like from the
HospiceWits training Centre and volunteering with hands on experience on actual
patients at the Houghton Hospice facility in Johannesburg South Africa and my personal
life experience, reading the training manuals on the Holistic approach of car giving and
knowledge acquired , which I had the honor to have received, from successfully
completing my first aid level 1, 2,3 and fire fighter courses from the National First Aid
Academy these are some of the innate qualities, I feel overall a truly entrusted caregiver
should have in their ability to carry out their daily duties.
As good caregiver I have learned from my training I must be empathetic and
compassionate to foster a genuine relationship with the patient. Being a family member
figure to them makes them feel secure and nurtured, especially when the patient has
been neglected by his/her own family. Some accept this harsh, miserable reality but
deep inside it is really agonizing. You can start by asking their interests, sharing stories
or engaging in certain activities together, such as watching a particular show or listening
to music. Upon relating to them, they will start to open up, and it can make visits more
enjoyable for both parties.
It may sound too cliché, but patience is a virtue. This holds true especially in the
caregiving career. Your patience will be tested to the edge, even to the point of burnout.
That is expected when taking care of the elderly, disabled or terminally sick persons.
Such strenuous demands require a certain fortitude that it takes a very special kind of
person to choose this line of work as a career. As a Good caregiver I will tell you that
planning ahead is key to keeping your sanity. Try setting some time aside each week for
future planning. By knowing everything about your client from his medical condition to his background, you will be able to get an idea on how to deal with them with
composure and provide the needed care and support.
Due to age, disability and illness a patient may have the tendency to communicate and
comprehend poorly, which is why they are looking for someone to assist them in the first
place. An effective caregiver can explain freely and conveniently how things are
supposed to be done to the client. Some of them may be harder to deal with, but do not
forget that they have illnesses that impair them and they do not possess that vigor they
used to have.
Since I will be spending ample amounts of time with them, I should be able to assist in
keeping them calm and comfortable. If they have relatives, I have to keep them updated
by keeping the lines of communication open about any changes in their relatives’ care
plan or condition. Problem-solving is a vital part of providing care for another person
and requires excellent communication skills as well and being a good team player
involving all the necessary parties to make the right decisions is key to providing good
care. Recording and report are also very important for good care giver.
Dependability is a combination of many qualities as a caregiver I must possess, but in
the real world, it is not as ideally fancy as it may seem. While you now know at this point
that taking care of a patient will be too demanding, if you do not have the passion to do
it for a long time, you will eventually lose motivation and the will to proceed further. You
need to bear in mind that these needs are not similar to someone who got fever or flu,
so make sure you are prepared to do this long-term, be organized, polite, punctual,
trustworthy, attentive, selfless, professional, be clean, have time management and
observant and have passion for my work. Look after myself to be able to look after
The future is uncertain, and at certain times as caregiver I might have to deal with
circumstances that are way beyond my control. It may involve doing something out of
the box, or just purely instinctive. The important thing here is discernment. I must be
perceptive and be able to judge a situation outstandingly to execute proper action. After
a period of getting to know the patient as good caregiver should be able to pick up on
what is really happening, use all the knowledge and training enquired to execute my
role as a care giver from learning about human body anatomy, physiology, about
common diseases, about treatment, about care, nutrition, hygiene, first aid , CPR,
communication, technical medical and health terminology both related to human body
and the equipment and tools used for care and to ask for help from medical
professionals and team members when required , refer to my notes and manual and
educating myself to strive to give my best to all those that I serve to better and ease
their Life journey to create a better holistically healthy people and communities.
The important part is always read, watch video clips on caregiving, take more courses,
continuously educate and empower myself on the health and Human body, be a better
person as an individual and practice my values , morals and ethics to serve and
become better , the best care giver one would want to have by their side as an Elderly,
disabled or terminally ill person. To teach my peers and those that I may assist to become future care givers by leading by a good example of my work, practice, values,
believes and service.