Heart of Helping

Janet has total responsibility for her mother's care. Mary, her mother, is suffering from dementia and is unresponsive, except for uttering yes or no at times. Janet is a substitute teacher and must take her mother to Adult Day Care before reporting to work. Since Day Care costs $41 per day, there is no extra money to find someone to care for Mary whenever Janet needs to shop or do errands.

The only way Janet was able to shop was to run to the market at 5:30 a.m. while her mother was sleeping, hoping she would not wake while she was out. To run other errands she would leave the phone connected to the homebound lady living downstairs. This was her way of life for two years.

A volunteer named Sandy was matched with Janet and Mary for respite care. She visits once a week for four hours, which enables Janet to leave Mary in safe hands and not worry all the time she is out. She may even be able to treat herself to a movie or a trip to the mall now.