Los Angeles Jewish Home's Blog

A Day at the Jewish Home

by Shelly Ryan

Ok! So many of you can relate to your alarm clock going off and wanting to hit the snooze button a few times! Although I'm not a morning person, I got to work earlier than usual, not knowing what I would face! As luck would have it, I went to JEK 4 to speak to an employee and got off the elevator to find an amazing sight! One of our sweet CNAs was talking to a resident about the resident's son, and this was how the conversation went!

"My son doesn't get to visit me that often because he's always working". The response from our CNA was "That's what's fun about my job, because when I'm working I get to see you"!

The resident welled up with tears and said, "But with your job you HAVE to see me."

And our CNA responded, "That's the beauty of my job! I don't HAVE to see you, I GET to see you!"

The resident then hugged our CNA and said, "You're like my daughter."

The CNA said "You're like my Grandmother—sorry, but I'm younger than your daughter," and they both laughed! And then hugged!

These are the kind of sweet moments I get to see every day! The interaction between our staff and our residents is why I've been here for almost 30 years. Our staff treat our precious residents like family. And the feeling is mutual! Our residents feel the love and care from our staff and it's a bond that is hard to break. At the Home, our staff go beyond "work" and care for our residents as they would a member of their own family. It's truly remarkable! Every consultant and surveyor that comes here, whose job it is to find what we're doing "wrong" versus what we're doing "right", ends up remarking about the relationship between our staff and our residents! To say we're a Jewish Home family is not just "words" here.

There is a strong bond that will forever be imprinted on the hearts of both our staff and residents. If you want to experience the love, come and visit us at any of our buildings. We truly have a unique environment where our staff and residents are equally supportive and protective of each other. It's a heart-warming experience—one I would encourage all of you to experience. Are we perfect? No! But our hearts are in the right place!! There is truly no place like "HOME" and I'm blessed to see it day after day!!

I often joke that we're "chosen", and when I walk the floors I believe it's true!! Each staff member has been "chosen" to care for their residents in a unique and amazing way. When I've had an especially challenging day all I have to do is walk the floors and see what the Home has created. We are truly blessed, and I don't want to take it for granted!!

Thank you to our incredible staff, our families, our volunteers and our supporters for letting the Home be the special place that it is!!:)

Shelly Ryan serves as Vice President of Human Resources at the Los Angeles Jewish Home. She has worked at the Jewish Home for nearly 30 years, and has played an instrumental role expanding and developing the Home's programs. Ryan has been a speaker for graduate classes at USC, CSU Channel Islands, American Jewish University, and CSUN, and has been a presenter at multiple conferences and seminars regarding worker's compensation and labor relations.

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