Raea Stika – An extraordinary caregiver
It has become very clear that COVID-19 has proved to be a huge concern for our elder population, particularly those who are cared for in senior communities. Caregivers also serve the disabled and children in our communities.
It has not only been the seniors, disabled and children who are at risk but those who care for and serve them. It is a relentless and demanding job that comes with huge responsibilities and often not enough compensation. Without adequate respite, caregivers often sacrifice their own health and ultimately feel resentment.
The role of a caregiver is sometimes a choice, and oftentimes unavoidable when a family member falls ill and someone needs to step up. Whether it is in the best of times or amidst the world-wide pandemic we all now face, caregivers are essential workers who are undervalued and find themselves on the front line under great and persistent stress.
A woman of wisdom
What exactly is a caregiver? If you look it up in the dictionary, I wouldn’t be surprised if you find Raea Stika’s photo!
A caregiver is a paid professional or a role assumed by a family member. Caregiving that is provided by a family member or paid helper who regularly looks after a child or a sick, elderly, or disabled person has not always been given the deserved attention, respect, appreciation or support. Amidst a broken system, caregivers struggle.
In this video podcast I welcome Raea Stika. As a reluctantly retired caregiver, she shares her incredible and honest first-hand insights about the spiritual and practical lessons learned. Raea, who embraces life with curiosity, commitment, and a deep open heart, draws wisdom from her caregiving experiences as a child for her mother, and then again during her mom’s end- of-life journey. She also shares about her role as a social worker and manager of caregiving facilities and programs, and ultimately her perspective as a hand’s on caregiver up to and including offering bedside care at death.
From the breadth of her experience and her sensitive awareness, Raea shares her concerns about the demands on caregivers and those they serve. Raea offers important tips to caregivers for self-care, and also emphasizes the blessings that are often buried amidst challenging circumstances that are available for those called to this role as a paid professional or drafted family member who are willing to calibrate their eyes to see them.
I can’t think of a better resource than Raea Stika to offer this in-depth overview of the assets and obstacles of being a caregiver.