Local senior companion care service celebrates 10 years of operation
CLINTON — Daughter for Hire, a local companion care service for older adults, began as a small, one-person operation in 2012. Now, after 10 years of operation, the company has up to 70 caregivers and provides services for hundreds of people across the Mohawk Valley and the Capital District.
Founded on Dec. 5, 2012, by Kathleen Rutishauser, Daughter for Hire offers services like grocery shopping, meal planning and preparation, dog walking, medication reminders and more. The services are available 24 hours a day, seven days per week.
“One of the biggest things that we do is companionship and socialization,” co-owner Denise Flihan said. “Our clients know, for how many times we’re with them during the week, they’re going to have that company during the week.”
Rutishauser, who founded the company on her own in Clinton, has always had a passion for caring for people, and wanted to make a business out of it.
“I started with one client, which went to two, which went to three, and it just started expanding like crazy, because there were so many people in the Mohawk Valley that really needed some help,” Rutishauser said.
“And when they found out they could get help for just a few hours a week, it was appealing to people, because that could be the difference between them being able to stay in their own homes safely, or going to live in a group living facility, assisted living or a nursing home.”
After an extremely busy year, Rutishauser decided to partner with Flihan to co-own Daughter for Hire and to expand the company. At the end of the business’ second full year of operation, Flihan and Rutishauser had hired 25 caregivers.
Currently, there are nearly 70 caregivers employed at Daughter for Hire, and it now serves both the Mohawk Valley and the Capital District.
“The bigger that we get and the longer that we’ve been doing this, so much changes but so much stays the same,” Rutishauser said. “We do what we do because we feel like we’re helping people, and we hire people who want to help people. We’ve just got more of those people now than we’ve had before, and we’re able to help more people.”
Rutishauser and Flihan agree that they feel a sense of pride when thinking about Daughter for Hire’s 10th anniversary.
“It’s not as though we’re discovering cures for anything, but when you think about it, we’ve all got relatives, we’ve all got friends that are aging, and it just warms my heart, and I know it warms the whole teams’ heart to know that we are responsible for making people happy, making them feel as though they can age in place and have a really nice group of golden years as opposed to doing something they don’t want to do,” Rutishauser said.
“As we age, our world gets smaller,” Flihan added.
“We lose friends, family moves away. And then we get to the stage in life where you do have some health issues that prevent you from driving. Think about it, if you can’t leave your house because you can’t drive a car, you’re trapped in your house. That is such a big mental thing to people, so the fact that we’re able to open those doors and expand that circle so that they’re able to enjoy different pieces of their lives … it’s just those little things that make all the difference in someone’s life.”
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