2022 CECA Foundation Stories of Caring Honorees

Take a look below to see our 2022 CECA Foundation Stories of Caring honorees!

Through the CECA Stories of Caring Awards, we aim to acknowledge and celebrate the remarkable efforts of dedicated caregivers in our healthcare communities. By doing so, we not only enhance the overall patient experience but also elevate the quality of care provided to patients, residents, and their families. The Ceca Award Program creates a platform for healthcare communities to showcase their unwavering commitment to essential caregiving values, fostering an environment where staff feel valued and engaged in their important work. To learn more about the CECA Foundation Award Program, click here.

To submit a CECA Foundation story of caring, click here! Please note that all honorees will be named at our 2023 Convention and Trade Show in October. Submissions will be accepted through July 14, 2023.



“Carissa has been a nurse for 10 years. She has been employed at Sugar creek for 3 years. Carissa is dedicated and dependable. Staff can always count on her help and skills working with the elderly. She has has a special talent working with dementia residents. Carissa uses personalized interventions with residents to meet their needs. She has exceptional documentation skills that paints a clear picture of the residents. We are lucky to have Carissa as part of our team. All of staff and residents can’t say thank you enough for all that you do!”

Submitted by: Kelly Montgomery, NHA




“Jennifer Sikes has been a nursing assistant for 14 years. Jennifer is always an advocate for her residents. She takes the time to make sure that they get the little “extras” like lotion, nails filed, makes sure they are shaved, hair combed/done etc. She is always picking up extra shifts to make sure that her residents are taken care of. She even changed her shift from 6a-2p to 11a-7p to help reinstate dining room services. She makes sure that the residents are up, clean, dressed, offered alternative meals and in the dining room prior to dinner being served. She will then take the residents back to their rooms and assist her co-workers with any transfers if needed. During our staffing challenges, this has been an extremely huge help and many residents have expressed gratitude and joy in being able to be back in the dining room since Covid-19. We had a resident that was having a bad day, crying/upset and wouldn’t calm down for anyone. Jennifer went in and talked with her. She reassured her that she was safe, held her hand and got her calmed down. She ended up staying over that night and sitting with her until she was comfortable. If Jennifer feels that her coworkers aren’t providing care to her high standards, she is not afraid to educate them and assist them in doing it the right way. Jennifer knows every resident in our facility and is able to tell you about them. Jenn does all of this with a positive, upbeat attitude.”

Submitted by: Tracy Blake, NHA




“Mary is a long time employee who embodies the caring and compassionate spirit that the facility is known for. She helps anyone at anytime with anything. She retired from being a certified nursing assistant and moved into housekeeping but kept her license active and will be the first to step in to help her co-workers or a resident with hands on care support. Mary is observant and notices changes in the residents as well as recommending changes that make the facility a better place to live and work. You can find her moving around the facility with a smile, holding a resident’s hand, sharing a laugh with a resident and their family or helping to clear tables. Mary volunteered to work in the RED zone during the pandemic and volunteers to stay after her shift to sit with residents who might need someone. Mary is everything you would hope and pray for in a caregiver and we are so incredibly lucky and overwhelmingly proud that she is part of our team!”

Submitted by: Michelle Gaugler, Administrator




“Kim is the Senior Director of Recreational Services at Hamilton Arms Center and has been the Recreational Director for over 32 Years! That’s right, over THREE decades of dedicated service to our residents and employees! Kim is a Speaker for the Pennsylvania Office and a Dementia International Practitioner. She is also a Mental Health Specialist and Cognitive Therapist.
Her background is gerontology from Millersville University, and Therapeutic Recreation from Temple University. Kim has experience in Mental Health, Adult, Pediatric Spec Care and Skilled Care.
She is known to TRULY LOVE her residents. She enjoys learning about their background and history. She truly enjoys working with dementia residents and being able to evoke positive memories and accomplishments (even if it’s just a short recall with the patient’s abilities). Kim has introduced a variety of creative ideas to engage residents and staff at Hamilton Arms. Just a few of these ideas and events include: An indoor exercise obstacle course for residents that had over 22 exercises for residents to complete. Recreation assisted residents through the exercises and when and when residents completed the course they were given a variety of Nutritional Bars and Health Drinks.

Kim also started a new program for residents called, “Do you see what I see,” where residents were given sticky colored art squares and had to match them to the letter on the art. Once completed, you could see what appeared to be a large piece of abstract art, but when held back it was an actual work of art! The residents truly enjoyed this activity and the art pieces turned out beautiful! Kim also helped to celebrate Nursing Home Week with “The Great Outdoors” theme, where employees and residents enjoyed s’mores, outdoor games and a fun photo shoot!

Her dedication to the residents and employees throughout the years at Hamilton Arms has been remarkable. Her creativity and outside of the box thinking has made a huge difference to so many lives. Kim deserves to be recognized and celebrated. She has shown exceptional care to our residents and employees for so many years and has made an unforgettable difference.”

Submitted by: Kristin McBride, Director of Communication and Employee Engagement




“We celebrated Angela this year for 40 years of service at Ellen Memorial Health Care Center. Angela started her career at Ellen Memorial HCC in 1982, long before nurse aides were required to be certified. Angelia has always showed up to work and worked hard, staying late to cover shifts and always willing to help out a coworker or train the new staff. Angela shifted her position at the facility to the activity department were she shined even more. She is very involved in the daily activities and lives of the residents at our facility. She is an advocate for the residents and always makes sure that their voices and concerns are heard and met. During her 40 year presentation, Angela was gifted with many kind words by her coworkers which she has earned their respect.

During the past two and half years, she stepped up and filled in were needed, going back to her roots of being a CNA, if that was answering call bells, covering a CNA shift, going on a resident transport, helping serve meals, assisting with window visits or facetime calls – she did all of this for our facility with a smile and says that she loves her job and the residents that she serves.
I am a lucky person to say that I also have been friends with Angela for the 36 years, we try to have at least one monthly outing together outside of work. She has been a part of my family and has attended many of my family functions.”

Submitted by: Elise J Burlein, Finance Manager



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