12/20/09 — Local volunteer earns award for efforts on behalf of adult patients

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Local volunteer earns award for efforts on behalf of adult patients

By Staff Reports
Published in News on December 20, 2009 1:50 AM

Fran Kasey of Wayne County received the Sara Jo Jackson Advo-cacy Award by the Eastern Carolina Council of Governments during its annual award ceremony at the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center.

Mrs. Kasey has served on the Wayne County Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee for more than nine years and has been a member of the Goldsboro Wayne Mayor's Committee for Persons with Disabilities for the past 20 years.

She also has a small tax preparation service providing free tax services for senior citizens and disabled adults.

She is the chairman of the Adult Care Home Community Advisory Committee, which works with another voluntary committee, the Wayne County's Nursing Home Com-munity Advisory Committee. The program is an advocacy program, not a regulatory agency.

As an active member and chairman of the committee, Mrs. Kasey routinely visits facilities, serves as an advocate for residents, helps ensure the intent of the resident's Bill of Rights is maintained and works to increase community involvement in long-term care facilities.

During the ceremony, Mrs. Kasey was called "a true advocate for our community because she does what she does, not for recognition, but from the heart. She is a quiet, but effective, contingent of Wayne County volunteers spend countless hours each year ensuring citizens residing in rest homes and nursing homes have a decent and safe place to live."

Mrs. Kasey said she enjoys her volunteer job and that the visits to the facilities are friendly and the places were always improving.

"We have homes ranging from acceptable to excellent in terms of their level of care," she said. "We visit the same ones for three years, so they know us. Most complaints we get are about the food. Sometimes those are legitimate but often it's just a matter of taste and you can't please everyone."

Mrs. Kasey said that the visits were mostly enjoyable.

"It probably sounds strange, but we have fun," she said. "One woman loves James Patterson novels, so I try to find his books and take one to her when I go out on a visit."

The banquet was attended by 180 people from the Council's nine-county region which includes Carteret, Craven, Duplin, Greene, Jones, Lenoir, Onslow, Pamlico and Wayne counties.