As part of a lifestyle and aging series, we’re working with renowned photographer Terry Lorant to showcase inspirational leaders in the industry. Each month, we’ll feature one or a few inspirational member(s) of the Amazing Care Network community who is using his or her voice to empower others in the collective aging experience. Read, in their own words, what the Amazing Care Network’s efforts mean to them.
This month, we’re proud to feature Jessica Matthews, Client Services Specialist at our sister company, Sterling Administration in Oakland, California.
ACN: Jessica, we know you’ve been with Sterling for a few years. Have you been around long enough to have seen Amazing Care Network get started?
JM: Yes. And that perspective is particularly interesting to me. When it first launched, a lot of people in the company didn’t sign up initially. And I thought well, maybe they’re not paying attention to exactly what Amazing Care provides, or maybe they felt as though it was something they just didn’t need.
All of my family is in New Jersey. If something happens to me, there are my friends, but they have their own lives as well. So to know that you actually belong to a network of people that is dedicated to caring about your wellbeing, your health, doctors’ appointments, medication, even, when the time comes, maybe helping to plan the end of your life. That’s what Amazing Care is.
In the beginning, I don’t think a lot of people understood that. Sterling is a family already, but Amazing Care Network is a guaranteed family for as long as you need them. And I’m grateful that Cora started it.
ACN: You’ve got family back East, and you’re raising your son here as a single mom. Can you talk a little bit about that?
JM: Yes, my mother and my grandmother absolutely hate the fact that I’m all the way out here! They really do. I love them to death but I just feel as though me being out here creates a better life for my son. Recently, I had to go back to New Jersey because my 92-year-old grandmother was ill. I didn’t even know if she was going to make it and I had to drop everything here and go back East. I was going through a lot then.
But through the Amazing Care Network, I had several people in the network to talk to. That really helps. And of course, having to make a last-minute plan to go all the way back to New Jersey was expensive. I had limited funds, but I had my Amazing Care Account. So I was able to use that to make the trip back East.
ACN: Have you seen any of your co-workers use Amazing Care Network in a way you think is interesting or instructive?
JM: One co-worker in particular was having issues with her son. He had a major illness and she needed funds to for his medication and a specialty treatment. I asked her, “Didn’t you sign up for Amazing Care Network? Why don’t you take a look and see what you have in there. “She looked and she said, “Oh my God!” Tears formed in her eyes. “I had forgotten about that,” she said. Part of me couldn’t believe she had forgotten, but because it’s an automatic payment, it’s out of sight, out of mind. And then, there it is when you need it.