Long Term Care Ombudsman Forum
January 4th at 5:30 PM
North Country Center for Independence
80 Sharron Ave, Plattsburgh, New York
At this time of year you may find yourself asking, “Where has the year gone?” Thoughts of what will my resolution for the New Year be? Commitments such as this is the year I will lose the extra pounds or exercise may quickly fade as we lose sight of our goal because results are slow to come. Our nature is to seek immediate gratification as it makes us feel good.
So why not make a resolution that will give you gratification each and every time you do it? Why not choose to feed your soul rather than your empty stomach? This year choose to be a volunteer and make a difference in someone’s life. There is nothing more gratifying than putting a smile on someone’s face or helping to resolve a situation or helping them seek answers. Long-term Care Ombudsman do that every day.
You may be saying right now Ombud what??? Om-buds-man. This is a person that advocates, educates and empowers residents in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, adult and family type homes. As an ombudsman you visit a local facility and assist in being the voice for a resident who may not be able to advocate for themselves. Many of our residents no longer have anyone that comes to visit them. As an ombudsman you are able to fill some of this void by listening to resident’s stories and bringing a smile to the face of someone who may feel that no one cares anymore. A certified volunteer ombudsman meets people from all walks of life and has the honor of being a part in a chapter of their lives that enriches it by being a caring advocate.
The ombudsman program covers Clinton, Essex and Franklin counties. We cover 27 facilities in which there are over 1,500 residents. Currently we are at a critical low number of advocates with far more facilities than we have volunteers. This is truly a volunteer commitment. So you may be asking, “How do I get involved?”
Step one is getting more information. If you like what you hear then you shadow a certified ombudsman in a facility to see if this is truly something that will be a good fit for you. If you say yes, and we love when you do, then you take the certification training. Finally you are mentored by an experienced ombudsman until you become certified and get assigned to a facility.
Why not take the first step and at least hear more about this volunteer opportunity? A forum will be held on January 4, 2018 at 5:30 pm at the North Country Center for Independence located at 80 Sharrron Ave (next to the VA clinic) in Plattsburgh. If you find that this is not the commitment you are looking for then we can refer you to one of the many other volunteer opportunities available if you are interested.
As you sit and reflect on the year and ask yourself questions such as, did I make a difference this year? Was I able to reach out and assist someone in need? Do I want to stand up for resident’s rights and fill my heart with one of the most amazing volunteer opportunities there is? If this is calling to you, then please reach out to get more information on becoming a volunteer ombudsman. If you are unable to attend the forum please contact Amy Gehrig, Ombudsman Coordinator, at 518-562-1732 to set up a time to discuss the program and your potential involvement.
Why not try something new for 2018? Dieter Uchtdorf says it perfectly, “As we lose ourselves in the services of others, we discover our own lives and our own happiness.” Become a volunteer ombudsman. Pay it forward and BE the difference. Hey, you may even lose some pounds
Call Amy Gehrig, Long Term Care Ombudsman: 518-562-1732
Happy New Year!