‘We make their lives a little more fun’

Caring for a loved one is a matter of course for many people. But have you ever considered that one in three people is a caregiver? In Amsterdam there are many people who could use some extra help, both informal carers and frail elderly people. Care entrepreneurs Monique van Beek and Rian Siero from Saar aan Huis in Amsterdam want to make a difference with additional informal care.

Saar aan Huis is not a replacement, but an addition to home care. Rian: “To ensure that the informal carer is not overloaded or to be able to offer just a little more air, they can use Saar aan Huis. We support the elderly so that they can continue to live at home as long and comfortably as possible. We do this by doing a little shopping together, doing a crossword puzzle or, for example, taking a nice walk.”

“We do not provide medical care, but loving attention in any area,” adds Monique. “If you are alone and of age, being alone all day can make you quite lonely. Home care is very busy and can’t stay long. Our Saars have plenty of time.”

The right match

As regional managers, Monique and Rian ensure the right match between the Saar or Bram (the male variant) and the client. “We first visit a client at home and talk to find out what they need,” says Monique. “Moreover, we like to visit a new Saar or Bram at home to get to know him or her better. As soon as we know what a client needs and what kind of person would suit it, we look at which Saar or Bram in our database would be a good match.”

A good heart

The Saars often come from care, or they have personal experience with informal care. Because many clients have dementia, experience certainly comes in handy, but it is not necessary. “A good Saar is above all someone with a warm heart. We also provide support and training for Saars who do not yet have much experience with elderly people with dementia,” says Rian. “It’s only a few hours a week, so you shouldn’t do it for a basic income. You do it mainly because you care about the elderly.”

A people person

The love for care and supporting people is also ingrained in Rian and Monique. “I really am a ‘people person’, and that is also very important in this work”, says Monique. “I love hearing stories from clients and Saars and seeing what kind of person someone is.” Rian also likes the personal aspect of her work. “I used to be a recruiter at an employment agency, but then I was approached by Saar aan Huis. I had no experience in care, but I was a carer for my father for a long time. After a day of walking, I was immediately converted. I like that I can now really make a difference to society.”

Important role

Rian and Monique notice time and again that the Saars play an important role in the lives of the clients. They regularly receive positive feedback about the Saars. “That’s what you do it for,” says Rian. “We can give that little bit of extra care to make their lives a little more fun.” Monique agrees: “We can really make people happier. The client feels that happiness, but so do their loved ones and the Saars.”

Monique has a good example of this. “I recently visited a 94-year-old client. Her daughter lived far away and could not come by very often. Her mother called her regularly to ask where she was. That is why she asked if we could arrange a Saar”, says Monique. “At first she was a bit hesitant and did not think a Saar was necessary. But I had gotten her to give it a chance anyway to see if it clicks. The Saar now comes three times a week and they do all kinds of fun things together. De Saar and the client have built up a really good relationship. When her daughter calls, the client often has no time to make an appointment. She’s blossoming!”

Sign In

Are you or do you know someone who could use the help of a Saar? Apply now for additional informal care from Saar aan Huis. Have you become enthusiastic about Rian and Monique’s story and would you like to roll up your sleeves to help the elderly at home? Register quickly as Saar and Rian and Monique will contact you soon.

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