Chrissy Canavan has been a senior living advocate and advisor for 14 years and holds the hands of family members through the entire transition of finding the most appropriate living option and senior resources for their loved ones.
As the first senior living advisor in Brevard, Chrissy has been referred to as the “matriarch of elder care services” by local media.
As an entrepreneur, Chrissy is a courageous leader moved by passion and determination to inform, educate, and advocate for the seniors she serves. Her goal is to provide, at no cost to the family, the knowledge she has obtained through her own personal journey.
Raised in Old Orchard Beach, Maine, and later, Oswego, New York, Chrissy’s heartfelt compassion for others began at a young age. This was made evident in her studies in Special Education at the University of Maine. She is also certified in the areas of dementia through the Aging Institute, and is currently working on her Administrator Certification.
There is a sense of kindness and charisma in everything she touches. She won the title of the 1988 Miss Maine U.S.A. Amity Award and also founded Mommy Entrepreneur, a company to help moms start in-home businesses to contribute an income while staying at home with their children.
As well as being a co-founder of the Children’s Hunger Project in Brevard County, Chrissy has served on the Board of Directors for the Children’s Home Society and the Florida Bar Grievance Committee. In 2015, Chrissy was voted Women of Excellence for Brevard County. Chrissy is currently on the board of the Brevard Hispanic Center and Aging Matters. Everything she does is about serving others. Chrissy is married and has three beautiful children. Their church home is Calvary Chapel Melbourne. God has given her such a compassion and love for people and she never stops serving through her various ministries.
The Granddaughter’s Promise:
It seems like yesterday when my grandmother first moved in with my family. The scent of Gram’s perfume filled our home and made me smile. It brought back memories of my childhood visits. Gram has always been independent, however, she began requiring assistance with everyday living.
After much deliberation, our family found an assisted living facility. It had a friendly staff, lovely decor, appealing common areas, and gourmet meals. The bedroom even had a garden view. It was the “perfect place.” Who wouldn’t want to live there? We were encouraged not to visit for at least a month, being told that Gram “needed time to adjust.” Against my better judgement, I listened. A few weeks later, during an unannounced visit, I realized that the appearance had been deceiving.
On Mother’s Day, I found Gram alone, slumped over on a couch. She was unkempt, over medicated, and incoherent. It took me twenty minutes to find help in this “perfect place.” How dare anyone treat my grandmother this way! I took immediate steps to have her removed from this facility. After contacting emergency services, she was admitted to the hospital. I was now faced with another dilemma.
After a stressful search for help I was introduced to the option of a bed and breakfast style assisted living. This was a licensed small care home consisting of only six residents with 24 hour assistance, and all the comforts of home. I was delighted with the level of care and compassion the residents received on a daily basis.
Sadly, my cherished Grandmother passed away shortly after moving in. The seventeen accounts of abuse and neglect she endured prior to her relocation took her life, as it does with many other frail seniors.
“Granddaughter’s Promise” is a tribute to Sally Ann Werra; to not only honor her memory, but to honor all grandmothers and grandfathers with guidance, protection, and dignity. Please remember, someone really does care.
May God bless you,