Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

This is Valerie VanBooven with the Senior Care Industry NetCast where leaders with three or more years in the senior care industry share their advice. So let’s get to it. In a few sentences, tell us who you are and what you do.

Emelin Williams:

Hi, my name is Emelin Williams, and I am a registered nurse and the owner and founder of two amazing companies that help our vulnerable seniors and disabled adults, Kays Heart which is a AFC assisted living home and also Safe and Secure Home Health Care that help not only the vulnerable, but we help the poverty-vulnerable population.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Nice. And where are you located?

Emelin Williams:

We are located in Eastpointe, Michigan.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Wow. And tell me in Eastpointe, Michigan, where is that in relationship to Detroit or Grand Rapids or…

Emelin Williams:

Only five minutes away.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Very nice. Good. Awesome.

            All right. So what is the best thing about serving aging adults?

Emelin Williams:

I love the fact that being able to help the vulnerable is just… it’s a gift, honestly. For me, it’s a gift. It’s a gift from God. I actually decided from a young girl that I would live my life for God by helping other others that was vulnerable as I was as a child. And so it means the world to me to be able to help seniors who are in poverty that otherwise would not be able to receive the services.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Very nice. And you mentioned that you have an assisted living facility or is that… tell us a little bit more about that.

Emelin Williams:

It’s a residential assisted living home. It’s three bedrooms. And basically, we take care of anyone from… they have to be 50 and over. That’s my population. They can be fragile, they can be frail, they can just need activities of daily living, or they can even be in hospice. And we provide every service they need from bathing to cooking to feeding them to keeping the house clean to doing laundry, doing the shopping, companionship, everything.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Nice. I think that these care homes like the small more intimate where you have sort of a family home, I think that’s really the trend. I think that’s really… especially with COVID. I think you’re absolutely doing the right thing because I think these care homes are going to be more popular than ever because I think people would rather not be in a large institution. They would rather be in a home-like setting with just a few other people there with full-time staff. I think that just makes a world of difference and during… because of COVID, I think the smaller the population the better. So you are doing the right thing, absolutely.

            All right. So let’s talk a little bit about what has inspired you to do what you… you’ve mentioned as a child, you always thought you would do something like this. I would imagine there’s other organizations or maybe parents or grandparents or just other people out there who have really inspired you over the years to do what you do. So who would you like to talk about?

Emelin Williams:

Honestly, I have a couple people that I must have mentioned quickly. One is… I cannot remember her name, Ms. VanBooven, but I will tell you I had a registered nurse when I was a little girl. I was sickly. And I remember being in the hospital for a while. And I remember her coming into my hospital room and bringing me toys to play with because she said a child shouldn’t have to be in a hospital day after day and not have any toys or anything. And so that made a big impact on my life, and that was one of the reasons why I became a registered nurse. She was the reason.

            And then other than that, the other reason why I would say is I had a couple of very special people in my life that made a big difference as well. And one was Mama Imogene. And then the other one was, of course, my birth mother. And then second and third and last was I would say, definitely, my sister Priscilla.

            She raised me and loved me and taught me the value of hard work and not giving up and discipline. So, and then my sister Priscilla, right now to this day, she owns a facility, and she takes care of vulnerable seniors and adults. So she actually took me back and forth to her facility, and I actually volunteered there and worked at her facility with her, with her clients, and that definitely made an impact in my life.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

So you’ve been doing this for more years than we realized.

Emelin Williams:

A lot, a lot.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

You’ve been doing this for a lot of years. I think that everybody I interview, most folks that are in the senior care business, whatever business that is, have a reason. They have a family reason. They have experience as a child. They have someone who took them every day to that nursing home or that facility or wherever it was that their parents worked or maybe their sister worked or owned. And I think those experiences really lead us down the path that we’re on, so that’s great.

            So I’m so glad to hear about all your businesses and your success and the population you serve. We know that no matter where we go, there are underserved people in big cities and in rural areas. There’s always a population of folks that just aren’t getting the healthcare that they need. And so thank you for serving those people.

Emelin Williams:

Thank you.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

All right. So I hear from other senior service providers that marketing online can be a bit of a challenge. I know it’s confusing and ever-changing. What are your thoughts or what’s your experience with marketing online?

Emelin Williams:

Basically my thought when you talk about marking online is that honestly, it’s expensive, and that’s the main thing I realized.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Can be.

Emelin Williams:

And with me being a small business owner, minority business owner, it makes it very hard for me to actually play the game with the big fellas. So what I do instead, and I learned some of this from you. I actually do a lot of reaching out, networking, and going to networking meetings, that is, before COVID-19 anyway. And so right now what I do, I write a lot of emails. My staff write a lot of emails to hospital discharge planners and workers and doctors and social workers. And I do a lot of emailing.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

And you know what? We’re a little bit limited right now, aren’t we? So I think you’re doing a great job writing those emails and just staying in touch, right now, is a lot of what you can do. Staying in touch with the people that have referred to you before, or maybe you would like to have them refer to you in the future. That’s really all you can do. And everybody’s in the same boat, so at least we all have this issue. And I really do believe that you can make a big impact without paying for ads. I do believe that, but it’s a lot of hard work, so it’s a lot of work. So, but if you’re sending out those emails, that it’s amazing. So keep doing what you’re doing.

            All right. What piece of advice would you give other senior care providers?

Emelin Williams:

I would tell them, first of all, regardless of COVID-19, just continue to put your best foot forward, continue to care, and continue to love everybody. Love yourself, nurture yourself, take a day out of the week, just to love on you alone. And that’s the main thing that you can do. It’s nothing better that you can do. Love is the reason. Love is everything. And once we all realize that, we’ll be in a much better place.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Absolutely. Thank you. I think you have to have this in your heart in order to be able to do this business. No doubt about it.

            All right. My last question is supposed to be a fun one. When you have a win in life or business, how do you like to celebrate?

Emelin Williams:

A nice juicy steak dinner with potatoes smothered and broccoli and a nice strawberry daiquiri and a big piece of strawberry cheesecake.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Right. So absolutely. That sounds good to me. I think we’re a little bit limited in big celebrations right now, but a really good dinner is always a hit. So, I think everybody needs to take a little more time to celebrate, like you said, celebrate yourself, celebrate those little things and those big things every day because anybody in this business deserves to take a little time for themselves and celebrate, so…

            All right. Well, thank you so much. This has been a pleasure getting to know you, getting to know your business, both your businesses, and your passion for what you do. So thank you so much for being on the show. I appreciate it.

Emelin Williams:

Thank you so much for actually inviting me to be on here. This was amazing. Thank you. And it’s good to see you again. I’ve been following you for years, years.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Thanks. Oh my gosh. Now I feel old, but thank you for following me for years.

            All right. Cool.