Supporting our seniors

Camryn McNeil helps older residents live a more fulfilling life

HAYLEA DILNOT-REID

2022-05-11T07:00:00.0000000Z

2022-05-11T07:00:00.0000000Z

SaltWire Network

https://saltwire.pressreader.com/article/281526524644167

News

We all age. The lucky ones in life get old. Camryn McNeil feels that aging does not have to be a taboo topic. “We’re all going there,” she says. She is the sole owner, creator and operator of Golden Living - Senior Lifestyle Support. Her business is about supporting local seniors and helping them “age in place” in a non-medical environment, which could be at their home or any facility they reside in. She visits her clients at home or takes them out on the town for whatever they need: groceries, walks, getting their nails done or just getting coffee. If they have limited movement, they stay home and do puzzles, wheelchair exercises or just sit down and have a chat. McNeil does not provide home care nor does she help with physiotherapy. She is there to provide friendship and a listening ear to any seniors who might benefit from her companionship and compassion. She also sends regular updates to families on how their loved ones are doing. She started her business last June after working in a retirement home as a placement position. She says the pandemic has made “senior facilities, and seniors living in their own homes, so lonely and isolated. COVID has really made it so clear that our seniors are missing a huge chunk in our home health-care sector.” Seeing elderly people lonely and forgotten made her immediately switch from nursing to what she now calls her “dream.” Although McNeil is only 22 years old, she says she has found her forever job. She explains the role she provides for her community means everything to her. “It fills my cup knowing that I am truly making such a big impact on a senior’s life. Not only the seniors themself, but maybe also supporting their family and loved ones to live their best life too. It also means that I’m changing the outlook on aging and how we perceive it.” McNeil is currently planning a podcast that interviews seniors around the East Coast of Canada about their life stories and how aging can be made fun. She also wants to do a focus on Indigenous seniors and hopes to make connections in various reserves across the country so she can best support their needs as well. She says, “I hope to one day expand my services across the East Coast and impact more seniors with more services.” She is even planning on creating a Golden Living senior centre in the city. She has big dreams for her business moving forward, although she is adamant that she is keeping her business small, personal and intimate. She wants to be, and stay, a constant in her clients and their families’ life. She says her role may look different as her and her business progress. She also feels that being a young female entrepreneur, she hopes to inspire other young entrepreneurs to be innovative leaders in their community.

en-ca