Improving the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities through care, comfort and compassion is Casmir Care Services’ mission. Fostering that mission is Director of Operations, Godwin Nwoga. Godwin has been with Casmir for the past ten years and while his educational background wasn’t in-home care, showing compassion is a family tradition.
Casmir, a family business built on principles of family-centered care needed Godwin to bring his finance and project management skills to the team. While this may be a stretch for some, it wasn’t for Godwin because his mother raised him to care for others.
“Right from a very young age, my parents, especially my mom, taught us a lot about compassion and being compassionate to people who you don’t stand to get anything from. Especially people who are in need,” he said. “It’s like an in-bred thing for us all in my family.”
In addition to his mother ingraining caring into him, Godwin says that growing to care for the individuals and families that the Casmir Care team supports wasn’t hard for him.
“It wasn’t difficult adjusting. True, my background was in operations, management and finance. But I grew to love the population and with the compassion I already had, it wasn’t difficult. It’s all based on family values, which is what our company embraces and champions on a day-to-day basis.”
And while Godwin is in charge of the day-to-day operations at Casmir Care, that doesn’t mean that he’s behind a desk all day doing administrative work. He’s often visiting homes, helping with, and getting to know the Direct Support Professionals and the individuals that Casmir Care serves.
Godwin acknowledges that the industry has changed over the past year and that Casmir Care has had to adjust. In addition to having purchased additional PPE and other safety equipment to protect those in their care and employment, temporary satellite locations were created so that staff could have a place to stay without putting their own families at risk.
There has also been a planned effort to ensure that staff, individuals and their families are up to date on the latest information, including providing CDC research on the vaccine. Casmir Care Services knows that engaging everyone about the need for immunity and getting the vaccine will bring the country through the pandemic.
Godwin praised the Casmir Care staff for the work they’ve done over the past year. “We had to dig deep to be flexible and do things differently, in line with the unprecedented changes due to the pandemic. But we’ve had exceptional staff who have gone the extra mile to make sure that our individuals are taken care of. We have staff that have gone above and beyond,” he said. “But the changes we experienced did not alter our philosophy for caring for our individuals. We’ve tried to stay strong on our vision – providing quality, effective, person-centered, flexible and innovative services.”
Speaking of the community, Godwin wants Casmir Care Services to remain a bridge in their community, in addition to providing in-home care. Finding employment for those with intellectual disabilities, helping with transportation to their jobs, and coming together with community partners becomes a powerful resource to the individuals. “The families can’t do it alone,” said Godwin.
Having staff who are going the extra mile during hard times isn’t luck. Casmir Care Services takes great efforts to make sure that everyone who works for them understands that compassion for others is key to success at Casmir. Godwin says that from the start of the employment process, the agency preaches compassion. And there’s also continuous training taking place.
But having compassion isn’t the only skill that Casmir Care Services is looking for in quality employees, said Godwin. Casmir is also looking for patience, flexibility, honesty, creativity, and empathy. Attention to detail is essential as well. A lot is going on with individuals, and going that extra mile is imperative in keeping individuals happy and safe. Also, engaging individuals and working towards their goals and milestones is a skill Casmir Care expects of their caregivers.
“Over time we hope that they (the employees) understand it’s not about financial gains – it’s about being able to add value to the lives of other people,” he said. “I want employees to look beyond this being just a job, it’s a profession. We’re coming to interact as a family. To bring about a change.”
And the family atmosphere is what Godwin enjoys so much about working at Casmir Care Services. There’s no red tape, and he has an open door and phone policy where employees can speak with management without fear of persecution. That open door allows for innovation and conversations that help make Casmir Care a better company.
When not spending time with his work family, Godwin enjoys spending time with his wife and children. Relaxing isn’t hard for him because he knows that he and his Casmir Care team have done their best for individuals and their families.
“I am able to relax at home with my family, with the understanding that in our capacity and to the best of our ability, we have done our best to ensure the health and safety of our individuals,” Godwin said.