Chidelu Enigwe, founder of Able Mind & Body, is passionate about the work that she does, and is committed to using her platform to helping others. Whether it’s providing job opportunities to those struggling, or offering the disabled an opportunity to an independent life, Enigwe is dedicated to improving and changing the lives of many.
Over the past 50 years, almost every Western country has seen the average life expectancy after 60 increase dramatically. America is eyeing a 27% increase, on top of the already 64.9 million current pensioners. As the elderly population continues to rise, we must ask ourselves—are we doing enough to ensure the elderly have a good standard of living, whether living on their own, with family or in care?
BlackEnterprise.com had the opportunity to talk with Enigwe about Able Mind & Body home care services, and what inspired her to go into this industry. She also shared advice for seniors and family members looking for home care services.
Black Enterprise: Tell us about Able Mind & Body and the home care services you provide.
Enigwe: Able Mind & Body Home Care (AMB) is an in-home service provider that assists individuals and families. Our agency is dedicated to helping our clients lead dignified, independent lifestyles in the comfort and safety of their own homes. We carefully assess and fully understand our clients needs, and selectively place trained personnel to meet these needs.
BE: What inspired you to go into the home care for the aging industry?
Enigwe: I come from a family of nurturers and natural caregivers. There is a joy that we have, when we care for others. Upon making a drastic career change, I felt that I wanted to explore something in this area. After a year of intense research and discovering the increased need in the market, it became clear home care was the best industry to impact lives.
But, I wanted to also do it with a valuable twist, which is to provide services for the intellectually disabled. We provide a community-based service that assists our clients and, allows them to remain safe and independent in their own homes. Although we are qualified to work with clients from a variety of backgrounds (i.e. the aging and the injured), we dedicate a lot of time and resources servicing those individuals and the families of the intellectually disabled. We work hard to provide a holistic service, working with every person and provider involved in a patient’s care. We do this with a commitment that we call the “Mother Treatment”: treat every client as if he or she was your own mother.
BE: As the elderly population grows, how are you able to provide a sense of independence for seniors, as they age?
Enigwe: Our caregivers and support staff are hand selected, screened, and continuously trained to assure the best possible quality service. Our agency works with the client’s care team to construct a tailored plan of care. This care plan details the clients requested needs and requirements to maintain a productive everyday life. The care plan is then carried out very meticulously to the clients’ specifications.
BE: What three key pieces of advice do you have for seniors and family members that are looking at a home care service provider?
Enigwe: There are three things I would suggest.
- Assess your needs. Discuss and determine what your loved one will need assistance with on a day to day basis. Know exactly what you need.
- Families should be very proactive about coordinating meet and greets with their potential providers. These meet and greets serve as a way to get to know the potential care provider and a way to assess if they are a good fit with the client.
- Ask questions. Questions are always a good way to find out if the agency can provide the services that meets the client’s needs. Specific questions relating to the client’s condition and concerns are extremely helpful in determining if the agency or caregiver can meet daily expectations.