Social workers help identify people suffering in summer heat


AUSTIN (KXAN) — Family Eldercare is famous for its Summer Fan Drive, but many requests for relief from the heat come when the agency’s licensed clinical social workers meet clients inside their homes when providing other services.

Carly Bassett sees a lot of people in need as a social worker with Family Eldercare. One of her first clients was Esmeralda Figueroa, who reluctantly sought assistance during a family crisis.

“It’s embarrassing for me to be asking for help, but there’s a lot of people that don’t like to ask for help and need it,” Figueroa said.

Bassett says social workers like her are sensitive to their client’s needs. “We are in the environments of our clients, and so as soon as we walk in the door, we can tell people that aren’t running their air conditioners and how hot it can be.”

Figueroa says she puts her air conditioner thermostat at 80 degrees and keeps box fans turned on to circulate the cooler air. The fans were donated during the agency’s Summer Fan Drive. 

“We can educate clients that we’re serving and help deliver the fans directly to them,” Bassett said.

The helping hand is deeply appreciated.

“The stigma I had about counseling, it was, you know, unfounded. Everybody needs help. And she’s been helping me through a lot,” Figueroa said.

KXAN is a proud partner with Family Eldercare for its Summer Fan Drive, which is now in its 28th year.

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