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A Conversation with Jessica Howard: The JEVS Care at Home Difference

By Thomas H.

JEVS Care at Home (JCAH) provides non-medical home care to seniors and adults with disabilities. “Non-medical” care includes help with personal care (grooming, bathing, dressing), and “activities of daily living,” including light housekeeping, meal preparation, laundry, and other essential tasks. JCAH caregivers also provide help with transitions from hospital to home, companionship, and other services.

Jess Howard is JCAH’s Director of Recruiting and Retention. She plays a vital role in making JCAH one of the most respected home care providers in Pennsylvania. Jess manages JCAH’s team of recruiters who actively seek outstanding caregivers to join our team. She also leads our business development efforts, supporting JCAH’s Community Engagement Specialists as they develop relationships in the community and spread word about JCAH’s award-winning services. The “retention” part of Jess’s title applies to clients and employees alike. JCAH understands how important it is to maintain a work culture that supports employees and recognizes them for their contributions. As a result, JCAH has been recognized as both a Provider and an Employer of choice in the 2024 Best of Home Care awards, presented by Home Care Pulse.

We spoke with Jess recently about her career journey, her passion for home care, and what it’s like to work at JCAH.

You have an interesting and varied professional background. What prompted you to begin working in home care?

I was looking for a career change and was referred to someone who ran several home care offices. I eventually interviewed with that company and stayed there for 16 years. I fell in love with home care and one-on-one care.

Tell us a bit about how JEVS Care at Home is different from other Home Care providers.

Here at JCAH, we have an in-house nursing team, which is rare for home care agencies. We are very focused on providing the highest-quality care for our clients. That is why we’ve earned several prestigious industry awards. We also care about our employees and want to set them up to succeed and stay with us to grow within the home care field. Plus, as an affiliate of JEVS Human Services, a leading nonprofit in Philadelphia, we operate with JEVS’ backing and support on all levels. 

Given the great demand for caregivers in the Philadelphia area, why should caregivers work for JCAH rather than another agency?

We have a uniquely supportive and positive work culture. We offer great benefits. Also, employees can train with our nursing team to develop highly sought-after skills, like CPR and Dementia-capable care. Everyone at JCAH has a shared purpose to provide caring, personal services.

Tell us about a few of the qualities or skills that make for an outstanding caregiver.

The best caregivers are empathic, caring, responsive, genuine, people-focused, and driven. 

When you are speaking to someone who is unsure whether home care is right for them, what do you tell them to help them decide?

I have seen the power of home care. The care and support that caregivers provide enables people to age in place rather than move to a long-term care facility. That is powerful. I would love for my parents to be able to stay in their home and receive quality care. Home care can make that possible.

Transportation Options for Seniors, Part 1: Philadelphia 

By Thomas H.

The theme of Older American’s Month 2024 is “Powered by Connection.” This theme reminds us that being connected to other people helps support good health and overall wellbeing. One way to stay connected is to visit a senior center, where you can make new friends, socialize and share a meal. 

Unfortunately, seniors who don’t drive can find it challenging to get around. But Philadelphia seniors have safe and reliable options for getting where they need to go, including free or low-cost options. 

Septa 

The first option is SEPTA.  SEPTA buses, trolleys, and subway lines are free to seniors ages 65 and older. According to SEPTA, Seniors ride for free on all routes for bus, trolley, Broad Street Line [B], Market-Frankford Line [L] and the Norristown High Speed Line [M]. Travel is also free for seniors on all Regional Rail throughout Pennsylvania. Septa states that seniors must have a valid Senior Fare card. According to the City of Philadelphia, other acceptable forms of ID are a PA driver’s license, Medicare card, PA senior citizen transportation card, SEPTA Key senior photo ID or PA non-driver identification card. For more information, contact SEPTA at 215-580-7145 (Press 6), or visit https://wwww.septa.org/fares/senior-fare-card/  

Public transportation is a great way to get around. However, trolleys and some subway stations are not accessible by people with limited mobility. And what if the bus or train won’t get you close enough to your destination?  

CCT Connect 

Fortunately, SEPTA runs a separate program for seniors who aren’t well served by bus, trolley, or subway. This program is called CCT Connect. CCT Connect is a shared ride service that provides door-to-door service for people 65 and older. The service costs $4.25 each way. An aide or attendant can ride along for the same fee. CCT vehicles are accessible to people who use mobility devices.

According to the City of Philadelphia’s transportation guide, CCT Connect, “requires reservations 1-3 days in advance, and is offered on a space-available basis. It can be used to travel anywhere within the City of Philadelphia and to locations within 3 miles of the City’s limits.” Seniors who want to use the service must apply. To receive the application or for more information about the service, seniors can contact customer service at (215) 580-7145 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m Monday through Friday. For more about riding CCT, visit https://wwww.septa.org/cct/traveling-on-cct-connect/  

Other Services 

Some insurance companies will arrange for transportation for members who need to get to medical appointments. If you have private health insurance, contact your provider and ask if transportation is covered by your policy.

The City of Philadelphia Transportation Guide lists several other transportation services that may be helpful for seniors. These can be an option when public transportation doesn’t serve a destination or there isn’t enough time to book a ride through CCT Connect. Most have a fee. These include ride-hailing services such as Uber and Lyft, medical transportation companies, which can be used in non-emergency situations, and other options. To download the City of Philadelphia’s Transportation Guide, click here https://www.phila.gov/documents/transportation-guide/  

JCAH is committed to helping clients live fully and independently. Contact us today for more information about our award-winning services for seniors and adults with disabilities: https://www.jevshumanservices.org/jevs-care-at-home-form/  

Make the Most of Your Summer with Career Connected Learning 

By Cassandra D.

Update: Applications for summer 2024 are closed. 

Did you know you can get paid to explore career paths, grow your skills, and find new passions? If you’re 12-24 and live in Philadelphia, you can apply to Career Connected Learning PHL (C2l-PHL) today. 

C2L-PHL works with organizations all over the city doing amazing things. Program options include opportunities in music, the arts, sports, the outdoors, and more. Program activities may include: 

  • Internships 
  • Service learning projects 
  • Career exploration and mentoring 
  • Professional development 
  • Job shadowing 

C2L-PHL is a great time to learn about the kind of jobs you like and discover your strengths. Programs will run from six to eight weeks over the summer. All participants will have the opportunity to earn a stipend of up to $1500.  

If you’re interested in making the most of your summer, applying is easy. Browse the C2L-PHL Program Locator to find an open program near you. Once you’ve found an opportunity you like, click “APPLY” and fill out the survey to get started. After you’ve clicked “SUBMIT,” keep an eye out for an email with next steps to complete your application.  

Summer is the season for fun and adventure, so take this time to start a journey of growth and self-discovery. You can even make friends and earn money along the way!  Programs are filling up quickly, so start your application today. Don’t forget, you must follow the steps in your follow-up email to complete your application.  

The application deadline for this summer is Friday, June 7, so be sure to apply before it’s too late! If you need help completing your application in a language other than English, please call (833) 750-5627. 

Highlights from the 2nd Annual Grow with JEVS

By Erin G.

Thanks to our sponsors, attendees, volunteers, and staff, Grow with JEVS was a huge success! Held at Water Works in Philadelphia, this 2nd annual fundraising event consisted of a cocktail reception, dinner, and entertainment. Key speakers included Dan Fitzpatrick, Mid-Atlantic President of Citizens; Laurie Franz, Chair of JEVS Board of Directors; Cynthia Figueroa, JEVS President & CEO; Revena Washington, JEVS ambassador; and Heather Keafer, JEVS’ Chief of Communications & External Affairs. Among the distinguished guests were Pennsylvania State Senator Jimmy Dillon and Councilmember Rue Landau, who contributed to the festive atmosphere with their presence and support.

Reflecting on Growth and Developments

Emcee Heather Keafer led the opening presentation and highlighted JEVS accomplishments over the last year. Click here to see the JEVS video. Laurie Franz praised the opportunities that JEVS provides as it explores ways to expand its services. “As we address our communities’ most pressing challenges,” she said, “we must continue to grow our network, grow our partnerships, grow our services, and grow solutions.”

Cynthia Figueroa previewed JEVS strategic plan, to be unveiled in full later this summer. She addressed JEVS’ focus on increasing services to youth, growing healthcare programs, expanding geographically, and fostering financial stability. She also announced that, “just last week, JEVS was selected as one of four organizations globally for an investment from ServiceNow.”  

Welcoming Generous Sponsors

JEVS is grateful to all the sponsors who supported Grow with JEVS – thank you!  Citizens, presenting sponsor, continues its long-standing partnership with JEVS. Dan Fitzpatrick stressed the importance of a thriving Philadelphia workforce and a healthy local economy. He also emphasized the role that JEVS plays in providing vital services for the city. 

Hearing Ambassador Testimony

Speaking of her personal and professional experience with JEVS over 15 years, Revena Washington gave a moving speech about the impact the organization has on individuals. From being a program participant to becoming an employee, Revena has earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration and today is a Clinical Services Supervisor for JEVS. She specifically thanked the JEVS employees who supported and encouraged her: “they believed in the future me; embraced the current me; and helped me let go of the old me. They showed me that I had the ability to conquer the world.”

Fueling the Future

At JEVS, we continue working with individuals to create sustainable paths to independence and economic security.

However, we can’t do it alone. Your contribution, no matter the size, can make a significant difference in our ability to reach more people and create a lasting impact. When you donate today, you help JEVS provide services for more than 16,000 individuals every year. Together, we can help every person achieve personal independence and fulfillment.

Thank you to everyone who attended and contributed to a memorable evening. Click here to see the event gallery. Be sure to follow @jevshumanservices for future updates, news, and ways to get involved!

Citizens’ Role in Fueling Philadelphia’s Economic Growth through Grow with JEVS

By Erin G. 

Dan Fitzpatrick, a commercial banking executive with over 25 years of experience, is the President of Citizens’ Mid-Atlantic Region. In this Q&A, Dan shares about Citizens’ role as the presenting sponsor of Grow with JEVS and the impact of this partnership on Philadelphia’s economic growth and community enrichment.

1. What motivates Citizens to sponsor Grow with JEVS?

Through Citizens’ giving strategy, we support initiatives that lift people up, so that our local economies also succeed. Citizenship is at the heart of our company’s identity, and when people and communities reach their potential – we all thrive. By sponsoring Grow with JEVs, we can fund both JEVS’ mission and a convening event for influential leaders in Philadelphia.

2. How do you see the annual fundraiser Grow with JEVS supporting the Greater Philadelphia communities?  

Events like this shine a light on the needs and opportunities that exist within our city. And most importantly, what solutions JEVs brings to the table. While we celebrate their successes, it is also a call to action on what more needs to be done to help people reach their full potential.

3. Why should public and nonprofit partners work together to provide opportunities for individuals? 

We can’t solve community problems alone. We need to team up to provide multiple opportunities for people to succeed.

4. As a business leader, how do you see the partnership between Citizens and JEVS Human Services supporting local economic growth? 

At Citizens, we believe that supporting workforce development is a key part of having a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive business environment and society. We believe that employed communities drive economies and lead to entrepreneurship.

5. What would you say to encourage other businesses in Philadelphia to support JEVS’ mission?  

By investing in job training and wrap around services, you’re helping to set people up for financial success, which in turn helps Philadelphia to thrive as an economy. And when our city succeeds – we all succeed.

Driving Economic Prosperity in Philadelphia

With gratitude for Citizens’ support for Grow with JEVS, we acknowledge their pivotal role in fueling Philadelphia’s economic growth. JEVS remains steadfast in its mission to work with individuals to create sustainable paths to independence and economic security. Together, we establish lasting impact and build brighter futures for our community.

2 Million Reasons to Help the Nonprofit Sector Solve World Challenges

By Vanessa Smith Updated May 8, 2024

At ServiceNow, we’re driven by our purpose to make the world work better for everyone. To that end, one of our top priorities is helping the global nonprofit sector digitally transform its operations.

That’s why we launched the ServiceNow.org Partnership for Good Grant: to provide nonprofits with technology that will allow them to do better business and more good.

In 2024, we committed to award four grants—up to $2 million in total value—to individual nonprofits that use technology in impactful ways to enable greater efficiencies and better serve their communities.

I’m delighted to share the four exceptional nonprofits that have been selected as the inaugural recipients of the grants:

CARE, a leading humanitarian organization working to increase access to quality education for marginalized children, is developing an AI-enabled education program tracking tool through the grant. Education and Youth Services grantee in collaboration with KPMG

JEVS Human Services, which works with individuals to create sustainable paths to independence and economic security, will develop a universal portal for staff and participants in its programs. Hunger and Poverty Alleviation grantee in collaboration with Accenture

Make-A-Wish Canada, working with communities across Canada to provide children with critical illnesses the opportunity to realize their most heartfelt wish, will establish an end-to-end workflow for wish fulfillment. Cause and Cure grantee in collaboration with NewRocket

WaterAid provides clean water, sanitation, and hygiene education to communities worldwide and will implement ServiceNow IT Service Management throughout its organization. Humanitarian and Disaster Response grantee in collaboration with EY

Changing the world for the better

As the president of ServiceNow.org, I see immense opportunity for more nonprofits to use the ServiceNow platform and want to extend its reach to even more organizations across the sector.

There are so many ways we can seek to change the world. For us at ServiceNow, access to technology is the most practical way we can help solve the world’s greatest challenges that confront nonprofits.

These grants give four nonprofits access to ServiceNow technology—as well as related consulting services to deepen their impact—so they can deliver outcomes at the same level as their for-profit counterparts.

We’re also giving the grant winners access to ServiceNow professionals who have the business and technical skills to support successful adoption. This includes access to our workflow design studio team, which will collaborate on designing bespoke solutions.

Partnering for maximum impact

It’s not just ServiceNow leading the charge. Our partner ecosystem is also leaning into the Partnership for Good Grant program. Erica Volini, senior vice president of global partnerships at ServiceNow, believes collective action and collaboration are at the core of creating impact.

“I’m thrilled our partners are joining us to help bring the transformative power of technology to the nonprofit sector,” Volini says. “It demonstrates two things: one, our united purpose in making the world work better, and two, the strength of our relationship in delivering our technology across varied sectors.”

Accenture, EY, KPMG, and NewRocket will each align to one of the categories of grants and be the dedicated implementation partner with the corresponding nonprofit. The four categories are:

  • Cause and cure
  • Humanitarian and crisis relief
  • Poverty and hunger alleviation
  • Education and youth services

Increasing access to resources

“Accenture believes that technology and human ingenuity can help address some of the world’s most critical challenges and improve the way people work and live,” says David Kanter, senior managing director and ServiceNow Business Group lead at Accenture. “Drawing on our extensive experience with ServiceNow technology, we look forward to applying our expertise to help nonprofits deliver better outcomes and scale their impact for greater good.”

“To achieve our purpose of building a better working world, EY collaborates with like-minded organizations to positively impact millions of lives,” adds Hank Prybylski, global vice chair for transformation at EY. “By joining ServiceNow as the implementation partner for humanitarian and crisis relief, our mission is to use technology to coordinate rapid responses in the immediate aftermath of disasters and support communities to not just recover, but also build back better.”

“We are thrilled to join ServiceNow’s Partnership for Good Grant program, where we will provide funding for the education and youth services category,” says Anita Whitehead, president and chair of the KPMG U.S. Foundation. “Furthering our strong alliance relationship with ServiceNow, this program aligns with our commitment to increase access to resources, like powerful technology, to make a positive impact in our communities.”

The ServiceNow.org team and our partners in this program are thrilled with the response and sheer number of high-quality applications we’ve received from the global nonprofit community. We’re honored by their desire to use ServiceNow technology to further their missions.

I thank Accenture, EY, KPMG, and NewRocket for their outstanding partnership in this program and their support in providing best-in-class advisory services to our grantees. Congratulations to our four incredible grantees!

Find out more about ServiceNow.org and the dedicated team helping the global nonprofit sector digitally transform.

© 2024 ServiceNow, Inc. All rights reserved. ServiceNow, the ServiceNow logo, Now, and other ServiceNow marks are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of ServiceNow, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Other company names, product names, and logos may be trademarks of the respective companies with which they are associated.

Unlocking Job Search Success for 55+

In today’s job market, job seekers who are older often face age discrimination. However, nearly 40% of employers prefer hiring older candidates. So, what’s behind this apparent contradiction?

According to Jackie Savoy and Sarah Goodman-Strong, counselors at JEVS Career Solutions for 55+, the issue is the technical skills required in job descriptions. Many jobs require savviness with newer technologies. That’s why continuous learning is vital. Staying current with training appeals to employers and boosts confidence, whether for full-time or part-time positions.

If you’re over 55 and are looking for your next position, now is the time to invest in yourself!

Join us for a free, virtual job search seminar, Strategies for Success, on Thursday, June 6th, from 10:00a.m. to 12:00p.m. Connect with your community and discover available training and resources for older adults. Learn about free career counseling, job search support, skills training for 55+, and computer classes.

Award-winning keynote speaker Michael Robinson, Director of Community Outreach and Hiring for the Lenfest Center at Temple University, is the keynote speaker. Participating agencies include JEVS Human Services, PA CareerLink, and the Mayor’s Commission on Aging, along with an age discrimination attorney and a panel discussion with local employers.

Attendees joining the live Zoom webinar will have the chance to win Amazon gift cards in drawings!

Save your spot for the virtual webinar: click this link to register.

Arthritis: What Older Adults Need to Know

By Thomas H.

When someone says they have “arthritis” they may have one of more than 100 diseases that affect the joints. These diseases include osteoarthritis (also called degenerative arthritis), rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory arthritis, and gout. All these diseases cause joint pain and stiffness. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), arthritis is the leading cause of disability. In the U.S., 53.2 million people (21.2 % of adults) have arthritis, which occurs more frequently as people age. Osteoarthritis (Degenerative Arthritis) is the most common form of the disease.

Arthritis symptoms like pain, swelling, and decreased range of motion may come and go. They can be mild, moderate, or severe. They may stay about the same for years but may get worse over time. Severe arthritis can lead to chronic pain. People who have arthritis may have trouble walking, climbing stairs, or doing essential daily tasks. Arthritis can cause permanent joint changes. Some types of arthritis also affect the heart, eyes, lungs, kidneys, and skin as well as the joints.

How is Arthritis Diagnosed?

To diagnose arthritis, doctors typically use a combination of methods:

  • Medical History: Your doctor will ask you questions about your symptoms. They will ask when your symptoms started and how they affect your daily life. Your doctor will also want to know about any family history of arthritis.
  • Physical Examination: Your doctor will check your joints for swelling, tenderness, and range of motion. This will help your doctor learn which joints are affected and how bad your symptoms are.
  • Imaging Tests: Your doctor may order imaging tests like X-rays, MRI, or ultrasound. These can help your doctor to see signs of arthritis, such as joint damage or inflammation.
  • Blood Tests: In some cases, blood tests may be helpful. These can rule out other conditions. They can also reveal certain antibodies and other markers of arthritis.
  • Other Diagnostic Tests: Depending on your symptoms, your doctor may recommend other tests. For example, your doctor may want to take a sample of fluid from a joint that is causing you pain.

Your doctor will use your medical history, exam, and tests to diagnose arthritis and create a tailored treatment plan to alleviate symptoms and enhance your well-being

When the joint symptoms of arthritis are mild or moderate, they can be managed by:

  • balancing activity with rest
  • using hot and cold therapies
  • maintaining a healthy weight
  • using assistive devices
  • taking over-the-counter pain relievers or anti-inflammatory medicines

To combat pain and stiffness, increase routine physical activity. According to the Mayo Clinic, “low impact” exercises like walking and stretching are best. These can “decrease your pain and stiffness, improve your range of motion, strengthen your muscles, and increase your endurance.” Mayo recommends avoiding any exercise that requires jumping or repeating the same motion. You want to avoid putting unwanted stress on joints.

JEVS Care at Home can Help 

Arthritis can make daily activities like laundry, cooking, and dressing difficult. This is especially true for people with severe symptoms. A home health aide from JEVS Care at Home can help. Our aides support clients with daily tasks that are difficult due to arthritis pain. This enables our clients to live fully and independently at home. Contact us today for more information on our award-winning services.

Get to Know JEVS Care at Home (JCAH)

Are you familiar with JEVS Care at Home (JCAH)? You may have seen our blogs or social posts, but we’re taking this opportunity to share about who we are and what we do. 

JEVS Care at Home provides non-medical home care to seniors and adults with disabilities. ”Non-medical” care includes help with personal care (grooming, bathing, dressing), and “activities of daily living,” including light housekeeping, meal preparation, laundry, and other essential tasks. JCAH caregivers also provide help with transitions from hospital to home, companionship, and other services.

As an affiliate program of JHS, we are aligned with the organization’s mission to work with individuals to create paths to independence and economic security.

The JCAH Difference 

In addition to our not-for-profit and award-winning status, we differ from other home care providers in several important ways. 

JCAH works with a broad range of clients.

While some providers only work with clients who pay for services out of their own resources, we work with the broadest possible range of clients, including eligible Veterans and qualified Medicaid recipients, who can receive services at no cost.

We support clients through the application process.

Our Community Engagement Specialists, Mason Wallack, Rachel Fein, and Tim Lawson, are experts in helping clients with low income or selected disabilities navigate Pennsylvania’s application process for “waiver program” services.

We have fun!

Mason, Rachel, and Tim also support the community by partnering with senior centers and other community organizations to provide educational and entertainment programming. For instance, Mason, who’s also a talented musician, hosted a “Piano and Pizza” event at Scottish Rite Senior Apartments in Center City, and Tim gave a talk on “Black Leaders in Health Care” at The Firehouse Senior Center in West Philadelphia. 

Resources and Contacts

JCAH has an in-house nursing team who train our caregivers and oversee the design of personalized care plans for each of our clients. Look for regular health and wellness tips from JCAH’s Nurse Kim St. Peter in JEVS blogs. .

And please follow us on Facebook and Instagram, where you can get updates and learn more about our team members.

For additional information about JCAH, contact Communications Manager Tom Hartmann.

Home Care for Veterans: Discover Benefits and How to Apply

By Thomas H.

Home care can be a solution for Veterans who need additional support to live independently at home. For many veterans, home care is available free of charge. Veterans can apply to receive home care benefits through the Veterans Administration’s Homemaker and Home Health Aide program.

What is Home Care?

Home care refers to non-medical help with personal care and everyday tasks, also known as “activities of daily living” or ADLs. ADLs include dressing, grooming, food preparation and cooking, and light housekeeping.

Home care is provided in the home by Home Health Aides or Caregivers. It plays a vital role for many people who are aging, ill, or disabled. Home care enables them to keep living at home rather than moving to a nursing or assisted living facility.

What are Home Health Aides?

Home Health Aides are trained professionals who assist with personal care and daily activities. While they’re not nurses and don’t provide medication or therapy, they support clients in living independently. At JEVS Care at Home, all caregivers complete a rigorous training program conducted by our in-house nursing team. Caregivers must pass a skills assessment test to demonstrate that they are ready to work with clients. All JCAH caregivers also pass a thorough background check.

What is the Homemaker and Home Health Aide program?

The VA’s Homemaker and Home Health Aide program is for Veterans of any age who need personal care services, including home care. The program is also for Veterans who are isolated, or whose caregivers need a break or “respite” from providing care. According to the VA website, services are available to Veteran’s who are already enrolled in the VA’s Healthcare Benefits Program. Home care and other services are provided based on a needs assessment. The VA encourages Veterans to speak with a VA social worker to explore services they may be able to receive

How do I apply for Home Care Services?

For information about applying for home care services under the VA Homemaker and Home Health Aide program, contact the VA at 800-698-2411. To learn how to enroll in VA health care benefits, click here to learn how to apply

JEVS Care at Home has a long history of assisting Veterans, with highly experienced staff dedicated to guiding them through home care options and available benefits. If you are a veteran residing in Philadelphia, the Lehigh Valley, Gettysburg, or Pittsburgh, contact us today to explore available services!

 

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