2020 National Caregiver of the Year

January 29, 2021
2020 National Caregiver of the Year | Rafael Benavides
Rafael was chosen from among hundreds of nominees. He is the first BrightStar Care of Santa Barbara County’s first caregiver to win this high honor. We are so very proud of Rafael.
Rafael has shown deep compassion for every one of his clients by going above and beyond when catering to their everyday needs. In 2018, his client Cathy had multiple falls, medical issues and eight hospitalizations. On his first day, Rafael was gentle and attentive to her needs. He came in each day with a positive attitude, encouraging Cathy and committed to providing her the best care. Laddie credits Rafael for improving his wife’s attitude and outlook on life and mentions that falls and hospitalizations haven’t occurred since Rafael began providing care. Rafael nomination letter

Rafael nomination letter 

Written by Laddie, client’s husband
I wish to nominate Rafael Benavides as an outstanding candidate for Caregiver of the Year. Rafa is my wife's caregiver and has been for a year and a half. To give you a sense of the difference Rafa has made for my wife, I have to go back to 2018. In that year, my wife had multiple falls, multiple medical issues, a total of 8 hospitalizations and was in a vicious cycle without improvement. Additionally, her mental health challenges provided a significantly complicating dimension to caregivers. In fact, in 2018, four other caregiver organizations with a dozen caregivers providing services to my wife - had given up on providing care for my wife. Yet, Rafa took over after Christmas of 2018. His gentle yet firm approach was exactly the right approach for my wife. He never gave up on my wife - but approached each day with a positive commitment, attitude and encouragement. Since becoming my wife's primary nurse and caregiver, her attitude has improved dramatically, and the falls and hospitalizations have largely abated. She respects Rafa not just for WHAT he does to help her, but HOW he does it. It is that approach that differentiates Rafa from the multitude of caregivers from other firms - he is truly head and shoulders above the rest. I certainly believe that due to the many complex medical and mental health conditions that my wife has - Rafa has had a herculean challenge. The improvement and stability in her life has been due to Rafa's outstanding efforts over the past 1 1/2 years - absolutely above and beyond the basics of caregiving. I believe without Rafa, my wife would still be in the vicious cycle that occurred in 2018. Thank you for the commitment, the effort and the compassion you bring to caring for my wife.