For DSP of the Year Eileen McGuire, supporting the women who live in the Ronni Drive house to stay active is one of her favorite parts of the job.
“Sometimes, one of the ladies will say to me, ‘I’d like to do this,’ my thought is ‘how can we make this happen?” said Eileen.
Eileen is the house’s unofficial team leader, organizing impromptu barbeques, mocktail Friday nights or movies on a rainy day. She might call out to someone moping on the couch to “live a little” offering an active alternative in the community or seeing someone in distress might play a song to cheer them up and bring them back into the present moment.
“Eileen goes above and beyond to make sure the women get the most out of life,” said house manager, Laura Horton. “Eileen could be off on vacation and see a flyer for an event. She’ll call management to make plans to take the ladies to events she knows they would like. She says things like, ‘I would like to take ____ to ________. I think she would enjoy it, is that possible?’”
During her shift, Eileen is often out and about with the Ronni Drive residents, whether it’s taking a picnic to the beach, a stroll around the mall with an ice cream cone, or heading out to the library.
“When going to the library, a book can be chosen because of the pictures or even by the way it smells,” said Eileen. “Every day has its own unique highlight.”
When two of the residents expressed interest in being more social as part of their Compass goals, Eileen found the group Literacy Volunteers Book Club in Syosset. Held at the local Panera Breads, Eileen accompanied the pair for group book readings, simultaneously strengthening their literacy skills and expanding their network outside of AHRC.
Eileen has worked at Ronni Drive for three and an half years and in that time has made her mark as an exceptional DSP.
“Eileen encourages and supports each and every one of our residents to achieve their dreams and live their best lives daily,” said Laura.