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Meet Jody Zvada of Care In Choosing in The East Valley

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jody Zvada.

Jody, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Care in Choosing is committed to educating others about elder abuse.

Here are some educational links to learn common signs of elder abuse and the steps you can take to report it:

NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON AGING

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC SECURITY

Why Jody Zvada? Why Care in Choosing?
I’ve Been Where You Are…
I can still taste my Grandma Jean’s Pierogi and chuckle thinking about what a devoted Cubs and Diamondbacks fan she was. Memories of stories from life in the Midwest and her love for her Great Grandchildren are etched in my heart and just part of my driving force to help families through Care In Choosing.

“Gigi” as my kids called her provided me with my first experience with senior living options. After moving to Arizona from the Midwest, she moved into a wonderful independent living community where she absolutely thrived! She would tell me living there provided some of the best years of her life!

Over time, her sight and hearing began to fail and made an independent living too difficult. So, my family looked to a placement service to help us find a safe and reputable assisted living residential home near us. That process opened my eyes to a greater need for services likes these and it was then, I knew I wanted to bless others doing the same thing.

I spent years getting educated about senior living, touring communities, meeting with owners and staff and learning everything that I knew I would want to know. In 2004, I began Care in Choosing.

Hospitals, doctors, and other health professionals can offer a list of facilities with openings for your loved ones. But, I know firsthand, Senior Living Placements require more of families. I have been where you are. I know your concerns, questions and the options available. I’m in these communities routinely. I know the changes in facilities, ownership, and staff and it’s my heart to serve you with my knowledge and relationships.

Grandma Jean lived for many years in the assisted living residential home where she was called “Ma-Ma” by the caregivers. She befriended the staff and even coaxed them into taking her to play the slots at the casino, despite her failing sight! She lived near my family so we could stop in for a game of cribbage or just to admire her State Quarter collection. I know these qualities of life concerns matter to you too, and it’s because of her profound impact on me, that I’m so passionate about helping others during this transition for your loved ones.

Has it been a smooth road?
In the beginning, I found the biggest challenge I had as an entrepreneur was loneliness. I enjoy brainstorming and being part of a team and found I was missing that aspect in my work environment. When I am working with a family for placement then the teamwork aspect does come into place. I also have found that belonging to groups with other small business owners to be valuable and fills that need to collaborate with those who share similar challenges and exchange ideas.

What makes you different from other companies that do this?
Other companies who offer these services in the Phoenix metropolitan area are typically franchises or part of a national placement company based in a different state. They often operate out of a call center with little to no presence in the community. By contrast, we are focused solely on the Phoenix metro area.

We do not accept payment from any facility to advertise their facility on our website.

We only recommend facilities that we would recommend to our own family.

We support many non-profit causes within the community we serve.

We have personally been through this process with our own family. We understand that while every family is different we can offer you support and information that will help you through your own family’s journey.
There’s never any pressure. If you or your senior don’t need to move to a dedicated care facility, we won’t recommend it. Your best interest is our paramount concern.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
Between 2010 and 2050, the United States is projected to experience rapid growth in its older population. In 2050, the number of Americans aged 65 and older is projected to be 88.5 million, more than double its projected population of 40.2 million in 2010. The “silver tsunami” of baby boomers are largely responsible for this increase in the o population, as they will begin crossing into this category in 2011. Thanks to advances in medical care and the ability to care for chronic conditions people have been living longer than ever before, affordable senior housing, transportation and cost of prescription drugs will be challenges for seniors and the many “sandwich” generation families that may be assisting in caring for them in their later years. Also, many families do not live in close proximity to each other these days, so it can be a challenge to help an older loved one while not living close by, there will be families that will need to relocate themselves or their loved one in order to help care or manage a loved one’s needs.

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