By: Ashley Strehl - Managing Editor of Print and Digital Publications
Many CNAs will tell you that they joined the medical field because they felt a calling to do so. For this CNA, the calling has extended outside of her long-term care community at Oak Hills Care Center.
Last month, Oak Hills Care Center CNA, Lindsey Fuller, was selected for the National Association of Health Care Assistants (NAHCA) Neighborhood CNA of The Month. According to nahcacna.org, NAHCA’s mission is to elevate the professional standing and performance of a CNA and other caregivers through recognition, advocacy, education, and empowerment while building a strong alliance with health care providers to maximize success and quality patient care.
Fuller has been a CNA for 17 years, and a CNA at Oak Hills Care Center for almost 3 years, “My mom was a social worker for more than 20 years for nursing homes, so I grew up in nursing homes, and I took care of my grandma before she passed,” Fuller said. “I saw the love and care that CNAs gave to the residents, and I knew I wanted to be a part of that.”
In the past 2 years, Fuller has taken her love of giving back outside of her community at Oak Hills Care Center by preparing meals for the people in need around the Oklahoma City metro area.
One Saturday a month, Fuller, her childeren, and sometimes her fellow CNAs prepare full course meals, drinks, hygiene kits, and socks for the homeless and those in-need around Oklahoma City metro area, calling them “Pop-up Blessings.” “I saw that there were so many people that were less fortunate than us,” Fuller said, “I’ve just always had a soft spot for the homeless community. They’re forgotten, and sometimes they even get shunned and labeled as a burden. If I have the means to give back to them, I’m going to do that. It’s just my way of being a blessing in a world gone crazy.”
Fuller and her group visit tent cities, under bridges, the Oklahoma City Rescue Mission, and various women and children shelters. “You go out there and you can meet all kinds of people,” Fuller said. “Just because they are homeless doesn’t mean they don’t have a story, and it’s so interesting to just sit and talk with them.”
Fuller’s passion to show love and care to those in need embodies the mission and core values that Voyage Long Term Care follows in everything that they do, “A lot of people get put in homes, and they don’t have family to come see them,” Fuller said.
“You become their granddaughter, you become their kids and their friends. Being that person for them is my favorite part about being a CNA.” - Lindsey Fuller
NAHCAs mission to recognize the challenging work of CNAs is something that Fuller holds close to her heart, “As CNAs we sometimes get labeled as the bottom of the totem pole,” Fuller said. “NAHCA recognizes that we are so much more than that. They give us a voice in the nursing community. To be acknowledged by them is more than an honor for me.”
To see what NAHCA had to say about their June Neighborhood CNA The Month, Fuller, you can watch the video here.