Niagara Gazette

Features

May 28, 2014

FUNDRAISER: June 4 event for HART Interfaith helps families keep aging, infirm loved ones safe at home

Niagara Gazette — Ruth Sirianni’s Lewiston home is evidence of a life well-lived.  At 93, she still enjoys every inch of it.

On the walls hang colorful paintings, created by Sirianni and her husband, Joseph. The music room holds her instruments from years as a music teacher. While she retired from teaching at 88, just the other day she strummed a ukelele for family and friends on the patio that overlooks her lovingly tended back yard.

Sirianni has some trouble getting around since her hip replacement, but is still very independent. It was very important to her two daughters that she stay in her home. Daughter Joyce Sirianni, a busy anthropology professor and church minister, had given her word to her mom and her sister, Anita.  

“Years ago I made a commitment to both my mom and my sister, that mom would stay in her own home,” she said.

It was a happy coincidence their next door neighbor was Sue McBee, the program manager of HART Interfaith.

“We’re a referral organization. We match up people,” said McBee about HART’s free services.

McBee said HART has a database of 250 caregivers who can be employed for a wide variety of services. In Sirianni’s case, it started out that her caregiver, Lisa Schultz, was just coming a couple hours a week to help Ruth with small things like shopping and doctors appointments. Now, Schultz is coming full time and acts as companion and assistant to Ruth. Another caregiver stops by to help her for a short time each evening.

The matchup is free because HART’s entire budget comes from fundraising, according to HART boardmember Patty Berggren. The services provided are as varied as the clients’ needs, from registered nurses to care aides, home helpers, house cleaners and even lawn maintenance workers, all of whom have been prescreened through interviews, training verifications and background checks.

Berggren’s own mother was assisted by HART’s service, which is why Berggren joined the volunteer board.

“It was a godsend,” she said of HART’s help to find a caregiver for her mom. “After my father passed away, she was able to remain in our home for years.

“When you look at it, it’s the perfect, proper way that seniors should be treated,” Berggren added.

What distinguishes HART from other home health care agencies is that the same caregiver stays with the client as long as care is needed. That provides a “family-like bond” that is unlike many other similar services, Berggren said.

Schultz has become a family friend as well as Ruth Sirianni’s caregiver.  

“It’s nice to be able to do this work so people can stay in their own homes,” Schultz said. “There’s no place like home.”

And on the other side, Ruth Sirianni said she appreciates Schultz’s assistance.

“It’s wonderful,” she said, smiling. “When you can’t do things for yourself, you have to accept assistance.”

While HART has no religious affiliation, it began in First Presbyterian Church in Lewiston to assist older people with various tasks around the house. The church still provides free office space to the group.  All the matchup services provided are free, although each client is responsible to  and HART depends on fundraising efforts to fund its operation.

HART Interfaith is holding a fundraiser June 4 at the Niagara Falls Country Club. Tickets are $40 per person and RSVPs are requested by Tuesday. For more information, call HART at 754-8313.

 

IF YOU GO

• WHAT: A fundraiser for HART Interfaith, a non-profit that provides home assistance referral throughout the Niagara Region

• WHEN: 5:30 p.m. June 4, with RSVP requested by Tuesday

• WHERE: Niagara Falls Country Club, Lewiston

• FOR MORE INFORMATION: There will be raffles and drawings. Tickets are $40 per person or $320 for a table of eight. Call HART at 754-8313 or visit www.hartinterfaith.org

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Features
  • SUN LIFE Opera intern 072714.jpg [Duplicate] Singing her heart out: Newfane woman wins prestigious apprenticeship twice. Rebecca Witty says she started singing in the womb. That might be an exaggeration, but the Newfane woman's love of music began at a very early age. "Music has always been in my life since I was a kid," she said. "My family is made up of musicians so that has played a big part of my love for music since the beginning."

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE Chef cooking demos 2 072714.jpg [Duplicate] F-BITES: Celebrity chef Bobby Anderson wants kids to learn more than just cooking. As a loudspeaker played "Waiting for the World to Change," Chef Bobby Anderson was busy changing it, just the other day. For Anderson, the cooking lessons he's conducting with local students this summer on Old Falls Street in Niagara Falls are entertaining crowds and giving young chefs life-changing exposure to new foods, new flavors and new experiences.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • SUN LIFE fair story 6 072714.jpg [Duplicate] More than rides and food at the Niagara County Fair

    July 28, 2014 8 Photos

  • mug - stack, catherine RGB [Duplicate] [Duplicate] NATURAL HEALTH: Taking a closer look at migraine causes and treatments

    Headaches come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from a mild tension headache to a migraine that has you locked up in a dark room afraid to move. Migraine and cluster headaches are by far the worst. 

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE tattoo 3 072714.jpg [Duplicate] Behind the tattoo gun — Niagara Tatoo Expo coming up

    Tattoos can be a touchy subject. Of course, people have heard they shouldn’t judge a book by its cover; still, people continue to report being denied jobs and being judged harshly for proudly displaying their ink. 

    July 28, 2014 4 Photos

  • mug - Jennings, Thom RGB [Duplicate] JENNINGS: It's the end of an era for fans of The Ramones

    Jeffrey Hyman, John Cummings, Douglas Colvin and Thomas Erdelyi formed one of the most influential bands in music history in 1974 — better known by their stage names Joey, Johnny, Dee Dee and Tommy Ramone. The last surviving member, Tommy, passed away July 11.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUN LIFE TOPS woman 2 072714 .jpg [Duplicate] Local woman honored for weight-loss success

    After Carolyn Sherman’s husband passed away, she became depressed, and her weight ballooned to more than 300 pounds. Wheelchair-bound, she ended up at Odd Fellow & Rebekah Health Care Facility in Lockport.

     

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • NIA Biz logo 072814 IN BUSINESS: ReNU director named to '30 Under 30' list Tom Lowe, director of ReNU Niagara, has been named to the 2014 class of Buffalo Business First's 30 Under 30 honorees. The award recognizes 30 Western New Yorkers in the early stages of their careers who are achieving at high levels at work and in the community.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SUNLIFELexisPlace1072014jpg (1).jpg Lexi's Place: A safe haven for teens battling suicide, sexual abuse and depression

    In a perfect world, a 14-year-old wouldn’t know exactly how it feels to try suicide.
    An 11-year-old who reaches out to the unwanted kids at school would not be thrown against a locker and bullied by other teens trying to make her feel small.
    And surely no teen would have a father who, when she was small, would give her to his friends for sex.
    All those things happened to the teens at Lexi’s Place.

    July 22, 2014 8 Photos

  • SUN LIFE wine fest 3 072014.jpg [Duplicate] Sip the Niagara Wine Trail's best in one location The Niagara Wine Trail reveals it's sweetness slowly, and only to those dedicated enough to spend the time. There are 27 wineries and to sample a taste of each requires much driving through the backroads of the Niagara region, and far too much sipping to make driving a logical possibility. That's what makes the trail's 6th annual Wine and Culinary event such a good idea. Wine lovers who've always wanted to explore the new and unusual offerings of the 14-year-old wine trail, can do so next weekend, all in one place.

    July 22, 2014 3 Photos

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Renewed Violence Taking Toll on Gaza Residents 2 Americans Detained in North Korea Seek Help US Employers Add 209K Jobs, Rate 6.2 Pct House GOP Optimistic About New Border Bill Gaza Truce Unravels; Israel, Hamas Trade Blame Raw: Tunisia Closes Borders With Libya Four Rescued From Crashed Plane Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page