Advocacy Alive In The Carolinas

Submitted by Michael Sokoloski, Manager, Grassroots Advocacy (GAO)

On March 23, at the North Carolina Learning Center, Hearts for Home Care ambassadors gathered for their annual advocacy training, with the focus on story-telling.  While it is extremely important for lawmakers to understand the policies behind the laws, one must capture their interest first.  A client story is the perfect way.  We invited a former BAYADA family advocate, Lynn Wright from Shelby, to share her story.  She described what she went through with both of her parents living with Alzheimer’s and how she advocated for them.  Paraphrasing Lynn’s words on the value of home health care…I can tell you how much it cost, but that is not value. I measure value in smiles, independence, safety and security, and peace of mind for knowing everything will be ok. That is why I advocate.  Her words were powerful, striking a chord in many.

During an exercise, our new ambassadors put together a six-word story of their own to convey why they advocate (see below). “I’m always impressed by the commitment of our ambassadors,” said Lee Dobson, Area Director Government Affairs. “They speak from the heart…and that is what a legislator will remember.”  In addition to story-telling, attendees learned how to garner support on our rate increase and the grueling process by which a bill will become a law.

Below are some of the six-word stories from our ambassadors on why they advocate:

  • The love and compassion for others.
  • Keeping people home where they belong.
  • Making a difference in children’s lives.
  • Everyone deserves care at home always.
  • Relying on others; caring for clients.
  • Helping those who can’t help themselves.
  • Always making a difference for families.

Photos: NC (top) & SC (bottom) Ambassadors who attending the training.

 

BAYADA Attends 117th South Carolina Governor’s Ball

Submitted by Lee Dobson, Area Director, SC Government Affairs (GAO)

Last week, two Hearts for Home Care Ambassadors represented BAYADA at Governor Henry McMaster’s Inauguration Ball as part of a contingent from the South Carolina Association for Home & Hospice Care (SCAHHC), a Platinum sponsor. Division Director Melissa Allman and Director Stephanie Black participated in a private reception, as well as the dinner.  With BAYADA’s commitment to the state and its recent expansion, this was a great opportunity to begin building relationships with lawmakers and show support to the 117th Governor.  Other SCAHHC attendees included David and Rayna Powell of Hospice Care of South Carolina and Kevin McHugh and April Mills of Embrace Hospice.  Both Melissa and Stephanie reported it was a great evening and well worth the effort.  They both would definitely do it again!

""
Melissa Allman and Stephanie Black at the ball

South Carolina: First Ask

Submitted by Lee Dobson, Area Director, SC Government Affairs (GAO)

This year, will be the first year in many years that we will be working with lawmakers to garner support for a much needed Medicaid rate increase.  We are partnering with other providers, as well as the South Carolina Association for Home & Hospice Care to ensure a unified voice.  Lawmakers return to Columbia on January 10, where we will work with leadership in both chambers. Senator Hugh Leatherman, Sr. of Florence will remain the chair of Finance and Senator Harvey Peeler, Jr. of Cherokee will lead Medical Affairs.  In the House, Representative Brian White will remain chair of Ways and Means.