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My mother has been in a nursing home since early November. There have been ups and downs, but all in all, a better experience for mom than living at home would be. There is an aide who works on my mother's floor who has been a godsend. Although not "assigned" to my mother specifically, She has taken my mother under her wing, cared for her personal needs, conforted her, entertained her. She has also taken the time to learn about my mother, and helped other employees understand how to treat her. In addition, this woman has also become a friend to me and taken lots of time to talk to me about my concerns and the different things available to my mom at the NH. My first intention was to give her a card and a $100 bill in a wrapped box, but now I'm having second thoughts. She is certainly worth that and more, but we've developed a good relationship and I don't want to, by my action, reduce it to a "business relationship," or look as if I'm "buying her" or trying to ensure her future services. Things are cool now and I don't want to make her feel uncomfortable, or draw attetion to the fact that I don't think she makes much money. I also don't have the ability to bake or make her something nice, which I know would be ideal. Please help. I don't think I would have survived this without her. She's truly one in a million.

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Last Christmas, I saw multiple plates of cookies and candy at the nurses desk at my mother's ALF. Having worked in a business where lots of sweets were delivered during the holidays I decided to do something different. On New Year's Eve I arranged for two deliveries of pizza, salad and lasagna from a local pizza chain to the facility (one for the day shift and one for the evening/overnight shift). Several staff members stopped me over the next few weeks to thank me. Many said they appreciated something besides sweets. It's good for the staff to feel appreciated because many of the residents are not really able to express their thanks.
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A letter of commendation is in order but you can't single out one person to "treat". There are many behind the scenes you never see, like cleaners and laundry ladies, all of whom contribute equally to a resident's well being.

Personally, a couple of times a year, I deliver three large tins of yummy European cookies to the office or front desk with instructions to place one in the staff room at the beginning of each shift. In the summer, when I'm buying fresh fruit from a nearby market garden, I'll do the same with fresh strawberries.
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My daughter works for an ALF. One of her residents feels toward her the way you do toward your mother's aide angel. With his son's help he put $100 in her greeting card. She thanked them profusely but explained that she could not accept such a gift. They were very insistent and it got awkward. Finally she said, "If you really have extra money and want to make me happy, consider donating it toward a recumbent bike that we want to put in my office." (She is a PTA) She has to clear it with the DON and I haven't heard the outcome yet, but I thought that was a brilliant idea. Since it will be physically in her office the gentleman can feel he gave her something but since it will be used by many residents it is not a personal gift.

Writing a letter of commendation and giving it to her supervisor and then donating something to the NH might be the best way to go. A small token gift should be OK. Perhaps an inexpensive pin to wear on her uniform that her patients would also enjoy seeing would be appropriate.
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Thanks for the answers, friends. Both good ideas!
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The NH probably prohibits their employees from accepting cash gifts but there is probably a program like Pam said where you can put her name in as an exceptional employee.

If you'd like to do more slip her a Christmas card with a gift card to Walmart or Amazon tucked inside.
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Most Nursing Homes prohibit individual gifts, but would accept a donation to the employee fund "in Honor of". Certainly you could nominate her for employee of the month/year, in a nice letter to the admins.
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