About Us - Part II
After navigating the challenges of helping senior parents modify their homes (See About Us – Helping our Senior Parents), we wanted to create an action oriented resource for families to create a safe and comfortable home for their senior parents and elders in their care.
Part II – Building Sage in Home as an Action Oriented Resource
As background, we drew a “hassle map”, created in part from our experiences with our parents (see About Us – Part I), illustrating the problems that family caregivers face as they try to help Plan and Coordinate so that a senior can age safely and comfortably in their home.
We learned the hard way that the needs of our aging parents were different than our own. And we learned that resources for families that provided practical assistance were few. (No more brochures, thanks!)
With all four of our senior parents living, each with significantly different needs and each living in different locations, we had the benefit of four different personal situations from which to learn firsthand.
We also started talking to friends and colleagues about our idea. Many were spending a lot more time caring for their senior parents that we had realized. Some were in anguish about their senior parents not wanting their help.
One former colleague expressed serious concern about the predatory TV advertising that his senior parents were exposed to during the daily newscast. (Wait a minute – Did he say parents and newscast? Not children and cartoons?). Yet another couldn’t believe the scams and dishonesty around financing home safety products for Seniors, particularly mobility aids.
Research and Training
We found a wealth of knowledge at the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), including the Beyond 50.05 Report. AARP found that 90% of Americans over 65 years of age want to stay in their existing home. From Health Canada and Statistics Canada, we also learned that falls are the most common cause of injury among seniors, representing 80% of hospitalization. 63% of seniors are injured in falls doing home chores and “over one quarter of all home injuries reported by senior consumers were related to products or equipment they were using”.
Match the needs and desires of the senior with the right products for their home.
We joined the wave of professionals, primarily designers, builders and remodelers, who have acknowledged the needs of an aging population by obtaining Certified Aging in Place Specialist (“CAPS”) designations from the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB). And we followed that up by taking the NAHB’s “Universal Design” course (thanks to Steve and Bill).
We spent some time learning about the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and gained an appreciation for when it is useful and when it is best left to its intended purpose – requirements for public places, not Mom’s home. And, we started reading the installation and assembly instructions for daily living aids and mobility products in addition to products for home renovation.
Aging in Place often starts with Hospital Discharge!
And, in the midst of this an extended family member had scheduled hip surgery. The hospital discharge papers she got were helpful, as long as you hadn’t missed the family meeting! (Can you tell what product the family was supposed to buy?) We witnessed chaos in an emotionally charged family as they acquired some bath safety products and arranged for some grab bars to be installed.
So, Sage in Home came to be! Our goal is to “pull it all together” for professionals and families who want to help and support patients, clients and senior parents in a practical, action-oriented way that you can trust.
We are unbiased about product brands
Visit the Bathroom Product Selectors and see how we have renamed each product based on its functionality and key features. (But you can still select by brand, if you want!)
Charlie and I wish to thank our team of researchers and writers who have helped us along the way – Adam, Shirley, Julian, Grant, Alfred, Vac, Harrison, Himanshu and Kyle. For the logo, which we love, heartfelt thanks to Sally, Charlie’s sister.
To learn and to “practice what we preach” during the development of Sage in Home, we have helped Charlie’s Mom renovate her bathroom and kitchen – both are beautiful and more functional! We also arranged some enhancements to my Mother’s new condo – fixing some of the earlier “learning”.
We hope you tell others about this action oriented resource for families and professionals helping Seniors!
CEO, Founder and Owner
Sage in Home