CNA quality supervisor fills her job with love!
Dawn Mason was hurrying through her day when a Homeland resident’s advice made her pause.
“You’re going to be more than what you think you are if you just stop and look,” the resident said. Did that mean Mason wasn’t doing her job properly? The resident laughed and said, “Stop moving so fast and just take a breath and look. Life will still be there, but you won’t be if you never pay attention.”
That was a turning point for Mason.
“Everything I do throughout my day, make it meaningful,” she says. “I may not do everything right, but at least I tried, and I’ve taken in the world and what it has to offer.”
Mason is Homeland Center’s CNA QA, sharing quality assurance responsibilities with Sharria Floyd. She supervises Homeland’s CNA staff, assuring that the staffers who provide hands-on care comply with regulations, Homeland procedures, and resident care plans, all to uphold Homeland’s commitment to excellence.
Just as importantly, Mason imparts the vital roles staffers play in maintaining Homeland’s home-like feel and comfort for every resident.
“Our residents expect person-centered care. Our focus is to make sure they get that care, along with compassion, love and respect.”
Mason grew up in Harrisburg with three sisters. Her father, William Mason, worked for the state. Her mother, Dovie Mason, was a Homeland CNA. She remembers once watching her mother dressing in a white dress and white shoes for work. “One day,” she thought, “I’m going to be you.”
Still, the path to nursing care was circuitous. Jobs in the U.S. Post Office and state government left her unfulfilled. Her mother reminded her that she had always been passionate about caring for others, so she entered CNA training and immediately knew that she had found her true calling. She recalled what her mother taught her: “Don’t ever lose your faith, because you lose your faith, you lose your God, and then you can’t love.”
Since joining Homeland in 2003, her love for the place and the people have helped the ensuing 14 years pass quickly. When she trains staff, she sees some who immediately comprehend the value of their work. Others might struggle, but she watches them overcome their reservations with little signs, like fixing a resident’s hair or engaging them in conversation.
“They are the ones I say ‘good job’ to because those are the ones that never thought they could get it,” said Mason. “You’re never going to get the best work out of anyone if they don’t take pride in what they do.”
Outside Homeland, Mason’s life revolves around family – going to church or watching football with her parents, sisters, and daughters, 23 and 18, and 19-year-old son. One Saturday a month, she watches her five great-nieces and nephews, ages 6 months to 9 years.
“It’s the most fun thing I do,” she says. “I’ll be so worn out the next day, but they keep you going.”