It requires someone with very specific skills and personality traits to have a life-long vision for working with people in palliative care. Providing support around grief and bereavement can be mentally exhausting. Most of us know that this isn’t something we’d find easy. Thankfully, BCHD MSW Intern Amanda Reid is one of those incredible people who was born to deliver meaningful palliative, end of life and bereavement care.
As soon as you start speaking to Amanda, her positive, bubbly, caring and compassionate nature shines through. She embraces everything, including her love of life, nature and the environment. Whether its cycling, hiking in the national parks or learning how to surf, Amanda makes the most of her days.
Originally from Hermosa Beach, Amanda then grew up in Laguna Beach before starting her studies at USC in the Master of Social Work program. A part of her program required her to complete an internship with an organization aligned to her values. Knowing that she wanted to work with older adults or those experiencing severe medical challenges, she contacted BCHD.
As Amanda explains, “I was lucky enough to meet BCHD’s Director of Community Services and one of BCHD’s Care Managers at an event just before COVID-19. As soon as I heard about their mission and understood what BCHD works to achieve, I knew this was the ideal match for me!”
Normally, this type of care would be provided face-to-face, but due to the restrictions of the pandemic, Amanda is able to communicate with clients remotely through calls or when possible, via video conferences.
Amanda explains, “In many ways, my internship came at just the right time. Social isolation has had a detrimental impact on many people’s lives, especially older adults and the vulnerable. To a certain extent, we all need someone to talk to more than ever.”
Amanda has been working hard, calling clients regularly and ensuring they have services such as grocery deliveries and other additional care, including accessibility to COVID-19 vaccine appointments. BCHD assists high-need clients with booking their vaccine appointment as well as ensuring they have transportation to their appointment if needed.
Having spoken to Amanda, it is not difficult to know that she will have built up wonderfully positive and impactful relationships with the people she has been speaking to over the past few months. One of the most memorable parts of her internship has been actually getting to ‘see’ some of these people via video conference.
“It was such an emotional moment when I was first able to put a face to the voice,” explains Amanda.
While the Beach Cities community is lucky to have had Amanda’s incredible support, it is actually Amanda who feels that she’s the fortunate one. “When you’re giving up your own time to volunteer it is so important that the work you do is aligned to your beliefs and passions.”
“I graduate in about five weeks and now know that I definitely want to work in this area of community care and ideally with people like those I’ve met through BCHD. I couldn’t have found a better match for my career aspirations.”