BC Care Awards – Safety Champion Nominee Shauna Appleyard

Every year, the BC Care Awards celebrate care providers who go above and beyond delivering care to our seniors.

In this nominee profile, we feature Shauna Appleyard from Sidney All Care Residence for her work supporting the safety of residents and team members.

Why did you decide to work in seniors’ care?

I left a completely different profession after complete exhaustion. I needed something I could be really proud of. That I could leave on a daily basis feeling accomplished and good about my day. I needed something that took my strengths and used them for good. I’m happy to say being an HCA has given me a renewed sense of purpose. It’s easy to come to work smiling, when you can make people smile back at you and sometimes even belly laugh.

What do you wish people knew about working with seniors?

Oh my, this is a loaded question. I am asked why I choose to do this kind of work all the time. The perception of the general public believes that we deal only with incontinence, but it’s so much more. We provide companionship, reinforce dignity and preserve independence. We are privileged enough to hear stories, and life lessons from people so beyond our own wisdom. Compassion has the ability to create an opening or an atmosphere to help someone though a tough time, even if only for a moment. I want to be the person that brings a smile to someone’s face. Being an HCA is a rewarding calling we should all be proud of.

What’s your favorite part about working in seniors’ care?

I enjoy the unpredictability of dementia care, from the Freudian slips or ninja moves I have acquired, to a person’s unique outlooks and quirks. I am blessed to have the ability to keep trying something new. From my experience, my favorite aspect of care is the simple gesture of offering a hand, palm side up, and nine times out of 10 receiving an individual’s embrace. You can see when you’ve impacted a person—who doesn’t appreciate that?

BC Care Award winners will be announced in early January. The awards ceremony will take place on February 19th, 2017 at the Fairmont Empress Victoria. Registration is now open for BCCPA members and invited guests.