The Albuquerque Opportunity Center’s Respite Care Program is for gentlemen experiencing homelessness that do not have a safe place to ensure that they received follow up care for their acute medical conditions. We have contracts with multiple Albuquerque area hospitals to provide this service to as many individuals as possible. We aspire to make their stay here as pleasant and comfortable as possible. We provide 24-hour shelter for these guests as well as transportation to and from medical appointments. We make sure these guests have healthy meals throughout the day and that they are taking their medications. We also allow for Home Healthcare such as physical therapists, wound care nurses, occupational therapists, etc. to meet with these gentlemen on campus.
During their stay here at the AOC, these guests have access to case management. We begin working on documentation and income as soon as they arrive. They also have access to computers and a phone that they can use to make appointments or to follow up with the benefits they have applied to while in our care. We try to teach our guests how to maintain their follow up, as well as how to navigate online services such as yes.nm and mysocialsecurity so that when they do leave our program, they can continue to use these resources.
Our goal in the Respite Care program is to be certain that every guest leaves us better than when they arrived. We are lucky to be able to house some guests directly out of our program. If we are unable to meet that goal, many of our guests will transition to our AOC Emergency Shelter where they receive or continue their plan toward housing. Some guests may only need a few days of recuperation before they can return to their own homes or families.
Our Respite Program manager Kirsten Galloska shared “It is a great honor to be able to help these gentlemen and is so rewarding to see them recovering and stepping into a new chapter of their lives!”