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Volunteer Foot Care Nursing – A Step Towards Health

By October 16, 2018Moments

Classic LifeCare nurses are using their talents to serve people who wouldn’t otherwise have access to foot care nursing.

Susan Fulton, Classic LifeCare’s Clinical Leader, says she and Clinical Nursing Supervisor, Simi Banipal, volunteer every eight weeks providing foot care nursing to people at First United Church in Vancouver’s downtown east side.

“One fellow came to see us at First United because he got himself a job two days a week and wanted to make sure his feet were healthy so he could stand for an eight-hour shift. So he wouldn’t be in pain,” says Susan.

This initiative started about a year ago when Classic was approached by community partner Evergreen Nursing to partner with the First United Church of Canada to provide Foot Care Nursing to those in need.

Elizabeth Kerklaan, who has volunteered for almost 10 years at the foot clinic at First United and is now on the board, says this foot care service is unique in Vancouver’s downtown and incredibly important for the people accessing it.

“A lot of the community we serve is on their feet all day,” she says. “It’s how they get around, on their feet, standing, walking all day. A lot of them try to take care of their feet to the best of their abilities because they know how important their feet are to them, but they often don’t have clippers or clean socks.”

Elizabeth says she reached out to try to get some foot care nurses on board over a year ago and their expertise has been incredibly beneficial for the community they serve.

“If people have long toenails their shoes are uncomfortable, their socks get destroyed. It makes all the difference in the world for people to come in and get their feet taken care of.”

Elizabeth says people are glowing after their foot care treatment and one woman said she felt like a queen.

“We are always looking for volunteers. There is a social aspect where we sit in a circle or semi-circle and visit with and listen to the community members. That social piece is really important.”

If you want to help support this foot care initiative, donations of socks, Epson salt, tea tree oil, Band-Aids, Polysporin, and money can be made by calling Cristien Donhuysen at 604-681-8365 x129 or email cdonhuysen@firstunited.ca. Visit the website at https://firstunited.ca.

Donations can also be made via Classic LifeCare, which will be delivered to First United by Susan and Simi.

Pictured above: Elizabeth, Susan and Simi during a Tuesday foot care clinic.

“It’s a great opportunity to give back and volunteer,” says Susan. “The people we meet are engaging and amazing and the stories we hear are very eye-opening. It gives you a better understanding of what some people are up against.”

Before Susan became a nurse, she travelled abroad and spent some time volunteering to help homeless people.

“I see this as a bit of a continuation of that ambition for me. Volunteering like this is also in line with the culture of Classic LifeCare and speaks to some of the values of the company, but also the employees we attract.”

Classic LifeCare’s Vancouver, Comox and Edmonton branches provide foot care nursing for clients, along with a complete home care service offering.

Foot care nursing:

  • Prevents complications, infections, injuries and falls;
  • Detects certain health issues like diabetes, arthritis, nerve damage and poor circulation early;
  • Provides health teaching; and
  • Promotes healthy feet and awareness.

A foot care nursing visit includes:

  • Nail trimming and care;
  • Corn and callous care;
  • A light massage to improve circulation;
  • Footwear and foot health recommendations; and
  • Referrals to other health professionals.

For more information or to book a foot care nursing visit, call Classic LifeCare or visit www.classiclifecare.com.