A nurse for more than four decades, Lois Engel still works with seniors, but now she gets to spend more time with them.
She and her husband Ed own a Seniors Helping Seniors franchise in Clinton. They and their care providers help seniors with services ranging from light housekeeping and cooking to gardening and transportation. They can help elderly residents stay in their homes five to eight years longer than they might otherwise.
“It’s a gift to us to be able to assist other people,” Lois Engel said.
She and Ed have about 30 people providing care for roughly 50 clients. Among other things, the providers take the clients grocery shopping and to hair appointments and doctors’ visits.
“It’s custom-designed according to their needs,” Lois Engel said.
The company, which uses seniors to help seniors, helps provide joy, peace, and safety, she said. The average client is a female over 80, and the average care provider is a female in her 60s.
The care providers don’t have to be certified nursing assistants. In fact, their providers include retired schoolteachers and bankers.
Seniors Helping Seniors does safety assessments, develops care plans, and provides companionship and one-on-one care in settings ranging from hospitals and assisted living facilities to private residences and children’s homes.
“My care providers are what makes this work,” Lois Engel said. “What makes us special is the good caregiver.”
Seniors Helping Seniors serves the greater Knoxville area, although the majority of their clients are in Oak Ridge and Anderson County.
The Engels started their franchise in October 2009. They had their first client within 30 days. It’s the only Seniors Helping Seniors franchise in East Tennessee.
“We don’t want to be large,” Ed Engel said. “We just want to be good.”
Seniors Helping Seniors is licensed by the state and audited every year, and its workers are bonded, undergo a criminal background investigation, and receive some training each year.
The company assists most clients a few hours a week. The Engels accept private pay clients and long-term care insurance, but not Medicare and Medicaid.
They try to provide peace of mind for clients and their families.
“People love it,” Ed Engel said.
Lois Engel agreed.
“The families love it,” she said.
For more information, call (865) 269-4483 or visit SeniorsHelpingSeniors.com.