The Home Assistance Referral Team – HART Inc. – was founded by the late Rev. Paul L. Moore of the First Presbyterian Church of Lewiston in 1982. It is celebrating 40 years of service this year.
A press release noted, “The combined challenge of an aging population and serious unemployment in the area led to the establishment of the organization. Through the years, HART Inc. has helped thousands of families and individuals by providing care for their loved ones, and has worked with over 750 caregivers, including home helpers, PCAs, CNAs, LPNs and RNs.
Board Chairperson Patricia Berggren said, “I have been on the board of directors of HART Inc. for over 10 years, and have watched the need for in home care grow steadily each year. In the beginning years, we were receiving 100 to 200 calls per month for individuals requesting help. Today, we average between 500-600 calls a month.”
Executive Director Christine S. O’Hara, MS, said, “As the need for in-home care continues to grow, so does the need for qualified, compassionate caregivers. We average about 10 interviews per month, and would like to double that number.”
She noted, “We are planning several celebrations this year to commemorate our 40th anniversary, including our annual caregiver luncheon in February and annual awards celebration in May. In addition, we plan to be promoting HART and all we do in the community throughout the year.”
HART is located at 505 Cayuga St. It serves all of Niagara County and portions of northern Erie County. The organization is funded solely through donations from individuals and organizations, special events and grants.
Those interested in registering with the HART team of caregivers and home helpers can apply online at www.hartprogram.org or by calling 716-754-8313.