From program support to nursing, these caregivers change lives

Dedicated Garth Homer team makes a difference every day

Haley McDonald and a friend take in the fun of Victoria’s Zombie Walk with support from their Garth Homer Centre team.

From art class to an employment readiness program, exploring local parks to visiting the Vancouver Aquarium, Haley McDonald does it all. The independent, outgoing 21-year-old also has her eye on expanding her artistic and gardening endeavours to further support her passion for travel.

But to do so, she requires the support of the Garth Homer Society team.

Haley has a very rare genetic condition that means she’s fully dependant on life-supporting medical equipment and nurses, explains Garth Homer nurse Victoria Weber.

In addition to participating in the centre’s Art Works and Employment Services programs, Haley is also in Garth Homer’s residential program.

“Garth Homer gave me a really nice house to live in with my sister and I like my new friends that I live with,” Haley says. “The nurses help me live my life and have fun. I have a garden in the spring and sell my plants and the vegetables they make. I want to make money so I can go skiing and camping, go to Disneyland and be able to travel. It costs a lot of money to travel with nurses.”

Providing support for diverse needs

Haley is one of about 200 clients served by Saanich’s Garth Homer Society, which provides day and residential programs for adults with serious physical challenges and developmental disabilities. Based at the Garth Homer Centre, program participants enjoy a wide range of community- and centre-based activities, selecting daily activities based on their individual interests.

In addition to successful life skills and geriatric initiatives, Garth Homer also offers a residential program, supporting a variety of individuals, including those with complex medical support needs, says Phemie Guttin, Executive Director, Service Operations.

Skilled team members needed

To support these various initiatives, Garth Homer employs 200 skilled individuals across many fields. Competitive wages, good benefits, ongoing education and room for advancement are part of the package, but so is the opportunity to work with amazing people like Haley.

“I have fun with my friends and the nurses help us by driving and coming with me. They need to look after my ventilator and help me when I can’t breathe,” Haley says, recalling an especially fun time in October. “I LOVE Halloween and we had a Halloween party, and I got dressed up with my sister and we went to the Zombie Walk in Victoria.”

That flexibility is vital for Haley, her friends and others at the centre.

“I think people don’t know that Garth Homer has to get vehicles for us,” she reflects. “We like to go places like the movies and the mall, and the park, and you need a vehicle to take you there. We have a big van and a small van, that take people who have wheel chairs and people who don’t.”

To learn more about the Garth Homer Society’s current employment opportunities, and join a community of caregivers who each day make a difference in the lives of others, visit garthhomersociety.org.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Campers packing after one night at Cattle Point in Oak Bay

Oak Bay Police Department serves bill for damages in fall 2017 encampment

PHOTOS: Cannabis consumption in the provincial capital

Victoria pot shops respond to the national legalization of marijuana

Homeless campers of Namegans Nation head to Oak Bay

Roughly 30 members of roving tent city settle at Cattle Point in Uplands Wednesday

Saanich mayoral candidates face new spending limits

Mayoral candidate David Shebib spent zero in 2014

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

Find your future at Black Press career fair in Victoria

More than 70 booths expected at Bay Street Armoury on Oct. 25

Money Monitor: Should you switch to a fixed-rate mortgage?

BMO’s Omar Abouzaher outlines the pros and cons of both types of mortgages

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

Earth still moving in Old Fort, B.C., but not above homes: geologists

Transportation Ministry crews are ready to start work on the Old Fort road

Around the BCHL: Youth trumps experience for Chilliwack and Salmon Arm

Around the BCHL is a look at goings-on in the BCHL and the junior A world.

Aquaman star spotted around Campbell River as production ramps up on See

Jason Momoa, best known for his role in Game of Thrones, is in town to film television series

Chain reaction crash on Vancouver Island leads to boat hitting house

Alcohol and speed may have been a factor in Courtenay crash

Proportional representation grows government, B.C. study finds

Spending, deficits higher in countries where voting system used

Most Read