An Amazing Senior Caregiver
What does an 84-year-old great-grandmother of two do in her spare time?
You would think she might be taking it easy now since she has worked the majority of her life–first in the banking industry and later as a school bus driver for handicapped children, but not Alice Dudderer.
Alice is currently an employee of Home Instead Senior Care, an in-home, non-medical provider of companionship and home care services for seniors. Last year she was the “CAREGiver of the Year” for the Baltimore County office owned by Patricia DeGraw.
Alice started her career at Home Instead Senior Care in April 2000. She applied after reading an ad and says she likes working at Home Instead because, “It’s easy work.” Alice also enjoys making her own hours, but most of all, she loves the fact that her clients are happy to see her. “Making someone else’s life a little happier gives me great satisfaction,” says Alice.
Over the last three years, Alice has had two hip operations but has bounced back on both occasions in just three months in order to continue her work. Her first client, an Admiral who lived at Blakehurst Life Care Community in Towson, passed away not long after she started the case. It was quite a blow to Alice because, she explains, “He was very kind and had a great sense of humor.”
She now has a client, who is also at Blakehurst, who is 90 years old. Her client, a former nurse, enjoys being outdoors. On nice days, Alice takes her for a “stroll” in her wheelchair. Alice also helps her with lunch, encourages her to eat, and reads to her. They have formed a bond and enjoy each other’s company.
Aside from her activities with Home Instead Senior Care, Alice is quite active in her church. She is a member of a bible study group, Semper Paratus, which collects money for the needy and local missions. One Sunday a month, she devotes to helping the children of the church.
Alice says she has always been active in her church. She and her husband, Charles, who lived in the same Pimlico neighborhood and was her high school sweetheart, devoted much of their time to the church. Charles suffered a stroke, which left him paralyzed on one side and affected his speech when he was only 48 years old. Alice took care of him until his death in 1979 at age 62.
Alice’s philosophies are “Life goes on” and “Variety is the spice of life”. She says that, “to be a successful caregiver, you need to be gentle and caring, have patience, and a loving heart.”
“These qualities, her compassion, and her dedication,” says DeGraw “are exactly why Alice was chosen ‘CAREGiver of the Year'”.
Office Manager, Debbie Wray, says, “Alice is an inspiration to all of us. Each week she stops by the office and brings cookies for the staff. It’s just another way Alice shows her kindness and caring.”