Aldens understand need for compassion

For husband and wife Mike and Rockie Alden, a common value brings them to Caring Hearts and Hands: compassion. These two volunteers help keep the house and yard clean and welcoming, bringing their experience from other non-profit work as well as their hearts to serve others.

How did you get involved with Caring Hearts and Hands?

Rockie: I ran into Cindy Daugherty a few years back and she shared the vision with me. My mother was in a hospice house in Arizona, and I saw and felt how important it was. I told her I wanted to be a volunteer.

Mike: I was aware of Caring Hearts and Hands through Rockie’s interest, involvement and training.

What work do you do with them? 

R: I went through the training for caregiver, but I do not have a medical background so I am training with someone right now. I usually sign up as the house volunteer and take care of laundry and light cleaning, as well as make food as needed, and I can usually shadow the caregiver at the same time.

M: I am a part of the outdoor maintenance team. We are a group of volunteers that maintain the yard work, do snow removal and support outdoor efforts of the house and property.

What draws you to the organization’s mission?

R: It offers amazing compassion not only to the guests but also the families and loved ones. And it provides a much-needed service for those that are at the end of life, allowing them dignity, peace and the best setting possible.

M: Understanding we have a need for compassionate, dignified and respectful care and support in our community is what impresses me about the mission of CHHC. Knowing that we have an organization with support people that are compassionate, competent, committed and provide servant leadership is a blessing for the guests of CHHC, the families, the friends and our community.

What experience do you have outside of CHHC and how does that help your work there?

R: I have been fortunate to do a lot of volunteer work and have interfaced with a lot of people in a lot of settings. I can use those skills to help others that are experiencing a different phase of life’s journey.

M: Rockie and I have been fortunate to be involved with and learn from so many incredible people and organizations in Columbia and mid-Missouri. Those experiences with non-profit, civic, community and city/county organizations, combined with working at the University of Missouri has provided me with an informed perspective that assists me with CHHC.

What do you do for fun/to destress? 

R: I like to exercise, read, travel, spend time on our family property and do crafty things.

M: I work out, work at and enjoy our farm in Callaway County, travel with Rockie, and live vicariously through our kid in Boston. And read… I really enjoy learning.

What is the most rewarding thing about CHHC? 

R: I think two things: Making people feel comfortable when they need it the most and allowing family members to be there for their family emotionally. Since they don’t need to worry about the care, they can enjoy this last time together without stress. I love the home and the new people I’m meeting and working alongside. I am really enjoying this work! It is super rewarding!

M: Providing a welcoming and comfortable home for the guests and families/friends at CHHC is really special. Knowing there is a place of peace, comfort and support combined with a welcoming and loving culture is amazing. CHHC is a gift to so many!

ForColumbia volunteers beautify Social Model Home

Thanks to the efforts of #ForColumbia, and incredible volunteers across the community, the exterior of Caring Hearts and Hands of Columbia saw an incredible transformation.

A group of nearly 20 volunteers from community organizations like The Crossing and Our Lady of Lourdes came together to trim back bushes and trees, weed overgrown garden beds, power-wash a privacy fence, construct a new section of privacy fence, replace screens on the screened-in porch, and create a walkway to a lovely playhouse.

“This has been incredible,” says Kasey Kronk, operations director of Caring Hearts and Hands. “The transformation in just a few hours is a testament to our entire model. We want to be a community home: a home for the community, supported by the community. And this shows that it’s possible!”

ForColumbia, founded in 2015, brings Christians together to serve the community together. This nondenominational effort brought people together, many who had never heard or or seen Caring Hearts and Hands of Columbia. Volunteers spent three or six hours, enjoyed lunch, took tours of the home, and got some serious work done! 

To learn more about a social model home, and end-of-life care, check out the resources page.