Catalina (second from left), one of our Residential Care Workers, has devoted the past 25 years to working with our clients at the Developmental Disabilities Association.
What’s it like having worked at DDA for 25 years?
Oh, it’s so fun. The staff and the clients, we have created a very close relationship through all those years. And we have all the support from Head Office, and we have the managers who deal with the problems that make your life easier. That’s why I’ve been sticking around for 25 years. Whenever there’s a problem, you let them know, they’ll try to help you solve it.
This is my first and last job. I immigrated here; this was my first job. And I’m going to retire next year, so this is my first and my last job. So for all of these 25 years in Canada, I’ve been working with DDA at the Arlington Complex.’
Where did you immigrate from?
What’s changed the most from when you first started to now?
Oh, I think it’s the resident’s aging issues. As they age, they need more care and support. Its okay, everyone goes through that. I need that too. (Laughs)
Are the clients that you started working with, still working with you now?
Yeah. The majority are still living at Arlington, but there are some new resident’s as well.
It must be like a family.
Yep. Definitely more like a family. There’s one resident who is no longer here, she used a wheelchair, and every time I came back from a vacation she would jump up when she saw me. It’s very touching. It’s that kind of a satisfaction you can’t get from other jobs. It’s more real.
What’s the typical day of working with a client like?
Oh, it’s busy all day, the Arlington folks like to be an active part of their community and neighbourhood. I am hear my name many times throughout the day when we are out and about, even though there’s other staff, they call me because I’ve been around for so long, they just call my name, “Catalina, Catalina, Catalina!”
As Catalina’s experiences show, creating positive change and lasting relationships is a big part of working at DDA. The relationships she has built and sustained over the years continue to mutually benefit both our clients and staff. It isn’t uncommon for DDA workers to find a “second family” in our residences, the kind of satisfaction that you can’t get from other jobs.
DDA is currently hiring Residential Care Workers! Click here to view current openings and join our team today.