Joanne Ellis always possessed a nurturing spirit.
As a teenager, the Toronto native spent a considerable amount of time caring for others. With ambitions of one day becoming a nurse, she volunteered during summers at St. Joseph’s Hospital, assisting nurses and serving as a patient companion.
Following the passing of her grandfather, she frequently visited her grandmother to help with odds and ends around the house, such as cutting the grass and cleaning—chores that oftentimes become difficult for a senior living in a three-storey home.
“I stayed with my grandmother in her home to provide care and support, but over time, her failing health required her to move to a long-term care home,” Joanne said. “We would play cards and sit outside in the courtyard garden during her final years and she lived to the incredible age of 97. This taught me at an early age how important senior care is, both to the client and to their families.”
Joanne went on to earn a business management degree from Humber College, which led her to a career in corporate sales, focusing primarily on audio, visual and logistics. Though she enjoyed her work, she felt she had more to offer the community and couldn’t shake the feeling that she would have made an outstanding nurse. “Then, my father was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1996 and battled it for a good four years,” Joanne said. “Though I had provided care to my grandmother, caring for my father was even more difficult. I realized during this time the challenges of having a young family while also caring for a sick loved one.”
Several years later, serendipity struck. One day while driving to work, Joanne passed a retirement home where she witnessed senior citizens working outside. She was taken back by the peacefulness and beauty of the moment, one of many that had prompted her to think about a different career path. Later that evening while reading the newspaper, she came across an article about Right at Home, a franchise company that provides in-home companionship, personal care and nursing assistance to seniors and disabled adults who intend to live independently.
At that moment, Joanne realized that working for an organization that provides assistance to those in need was just the career change that she needed. With the support and encouragement of her children, she took a leap of faith and resigned from her sales position. She showed up at the Right at Home office, resume in hand, and asked for a job. “I wasn’t considering a career change at the time, but I was moved by the care that Right at Home provides and the difference they were making in the community,” Joanne said. “Leaving my job was scary at first, but it paid off. That article changed my life.”
She began working with Right at Home in March 2013 as a part-time caregiver, taking people on walks and to doctor appointments, and helping clean and cook meals. She loved every minute that she spent with clients – and the Right at Home staff quickly took notice. Joanne was soon promoted into a Community Awareness role in Mississauga, spreading the word to help families in need of custom care. From there, her experience and enthusiasm led her to care planning, working with families to discover their unique care needs and to create a plan that both caregivers and families could implement to help the client. Families loved working with Joanne, realizing early in the relationship that she truly cared and would always look after their best interests.
At this point, Joanne began thinking about doing more. She had experience in caregiving, care planning and community outreach, all fueled by her passion for the brand. Owning her own Right at Home franchise was a natural next step, and now she has finally landed the dream career that she envisioned for herself as a teenager. Right at Home provides Joanne with an opportunity to feel fulfilled in her work, get involved with the community and help clients and their families get the care they need and deserve, all while making a great living. “I am so glad I had the courage – and the support from my family – to pursue my dreams. The sacrifices we all made ultimately led to me becoming an entrepreneur at 47 years old,” Joanne said. “My advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to find what moves you – and make it a career. You’ll never lose sight of what’s important and you’ll ultimately be happier and more successful.”
Providing services ranging from companionship to nursing care, Joanne said Right at Home offers the full spectrum of care that is important for families. She feels that caregivers are truly the face of the company and focuses on build trust and adding life to years for her clients.
“Everyone I have met in the Right at Home family is working towards the same goal – adding life to years for the clients we service,” Joanne said. “Our clients are an extension of our family— and I know they feel the same way.” “Joanne possesses a quality that many people don’t – heart,” said Mark Goliger,Chief Operating Officer of Right at Home Canada. “When she knocked on the door
of our office, I knew she was special. She has put in so much hard work over the years and I am thrilled that she made her dreams come true by becoming a Right at Home Franchisee.”
For more information about Right at Home franchising opportunities, please visit www.rightathomecanada.com/franchise-opportunities/
About Right at Home Canada
With a unique approach and a higher level of quality of care, Right at Home Canada offers both non-medical and medical care to seniors and disabled adults who want to continue to live independently. Each caregiver is thoroughly screened, trained and insured prior to entering a client’s home. Right at Home Canada provides the Right Care, focusing on the Right People doing the Right Things the Right Way for the Right Reason. Right at Home Canada has offices in Burlington, Oakville, Niagara Falls, St. Catharines, Mississauga, Hamilton, the Georgian Triangle, Brampton, Guelph, Cambridge, Kitchener-Waterloo, London, Etobicoke South/West Toronto, Etobicoke North and Calgary.
For more information on Right at Home Canada, visit About Right at Home Canada at: www.rightathomecanada.com