There are 24 hours in a day. Some days that feels like too many, but for most it does not feel like nearly enough. From the minute we wake up to the minute we find rest, we are doing something with the time in between. For the majority of us that time is spent working.
For Avona Kasselman, co-owner and co-founder of Russellville’s AMCARE Senior Life Partners, the work that fills her time is certainly done with much conviction and passion. She truly loves what she does.
AMCARE is a faith-based, non-franchise, in-home personal care agency that assists clients with non-medical activities of daily living. Activities such as personal care (bathing, grooming), mobility, transportation, medication and appointment reminders, meal preparation, light housekeeping, companionship, grocery shopping and more. Their services are not just for senior citizens, but also for anyone over the age of 18 who is experiencing chronic illness, post-operative recovery, Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Parkinson’s and physical or mental disability.
In 2004, after a long, successful career in banking, Kasselman took a “leap of faith” and resigned from her position to accompany her husband and now business partner, Monty, to Mississippi for a job opportunity.
Eager to be back home and their commitments in Mississippi fulfilled, the Kasselman’s moved back to Arkansas in 2006. Avona was ready to dig back into a career, but unsure of what her next move was. “Monty told me I needed to pray about it and that I was at a time in my life that I could do what I was passionate about, and to think about what I felt like my calling and mission was,” said Kasselman.
“In my praying, I found that I’ve always been someone who wants to be needed. I didn’t know where that would lead, so Monty told me to Google.” After much research, Kasselman discovered in-home care services. That was the spark that lit what would be the bright future of AMCARE in Russellville.
“We saw a huge need in this area for this type of assistance. What we do complements home health care. We follow the same guidelines and certifications as home health, but home health is medical assistance in the home. We are classified as home care,” said Kasselman.
Although AMCARE’s services are not medical, the part of their industry that they occupy requires a heavy load of responsibility and compassion. “We take pride in our hiring process. I meet and interview every care assistant. They go through thorough training, skill checks, and are certified and properly trained,” said Kasselman. In addition, each caregiver’s personality is considered when being matched with clients. Furthermore, AMCARE is licensed by the Arkansas Department of Labor, Arkansas Department of Health and certified by Arkansas Department of Human Services and the Division of Aging and Adult Services.
“We have two nurses on staff. One does admissions, research and supervisory visits, and our other RN does all of our auditing. We are probably taking more steps than necessary, but it is important to us that each client receives the best care,” said Kasselman.
If you are a compassionate, kind person looking for work, you may want to look into pursuing a career with AMCARE, who is dedicated to making education and opportunities accessible. “We now have our own PCA training. We are willing to work with individuals who want to go into this industry and do not have certification. We also have online classes so most of the training can be done online. As far as skills training, we have them come in and work with our nurse,” explained Kasselman.
“We are hometown folks taking care of hometown folks. You don’t talk to a corporate office, you talk to someone right here that has grown up in the River Valley,” added Kasselman.
If you or someone you know could benefit from AMCARE’s services or you are interested in the possibility of a career with AMCARE, call 479-880-1112, visit their website, www.youramcare.com or stop by their office located at 914 West B Street in Russellville.