Paulette Coley has worked for 20 years as a home care aid. A job that has become increasingly important and increasingly challenging during the pandemic.
“I just try to be confident and be positive," she said.
As the aid on call, Paulette is ready to travel from the Bronx to any of the five boroughs.
“No matter how difficult the situation was or when I was called, I was ready to go, because I’m thinking, ‘They’re there and they need my help," said Coley.
Sometimes her shifts would last through the night. But whether the shift was 12 hrs or 24, Paulette was there.
“There’s not a place Paulette goes that doesn’t want her to stay. It’s not just the skills, It’s the heart. And she has this heart that understands that they’re needed," said Dorothy Sanchez, SelfHelp Directer of Operations.
“Their family members are not there and they’re seeing us and they’re kind of trusting us to give them support," said Coley.
With the constant fear of covid, many of SelfHelps clients are isolated within their homes. Paulette says it’s so important to be safe while reminding them someone cares and to trust their own capabilities.
“I allow them to do things for themselves. I said, ‘I’m here to help you. I’m here to assist you. Not to do it for you. We’re gonna do it together," said Coley.
“It’s unspeakably gratifying you know to hear back from the family members ‘Thank you so much. You guys really made a difference," said Sanchez.
For aiding those who need it most, Paulette Coley is our New Yorker of the week.