Georgia Small Business Person of the Year 2013
CaraVita - Purpose Driven Organization
Beth Cayce, Georgia Small Business Person of the Year 2013, is the founder and CEO of CaraVita Home Care, a private duty homecare agency serving the Metro Atlanta area since 1998. Beth has spent a lifetime in service of those most in need, dedicating her professional career to seniors in the local community, and building sustainable programs for the less fortunate a world away.
CaraVita has provided in-home personal care services to over 16,000 seniors in the Metro Atlanta area for fifteen years. Offering a unique approach to care, CaraVita utilizes a multi-disciplinary team of healthcare professionals to provide care to seniors in their homes. Cutting edge and innovative, CaraVita also offers a one of a kind Caregiver Academy for family members to learn the necessary homecare skills. The company recently launched the Virtual Dementia Tour®, an experiential “tour” that guides participants through daily life with the symptoms of dementia. The Caregiver Academy and training tours promote awareness and are provided to the community at no cost. Through all of these endeavors, the mission of CaraVita is to help seniors, wherever they are in the caregiving process, to remain as independent in their homes as long as possible.
Cayce’s approach is simple: Provide the very best in care for families and loved ones. To achieve the goal, CaraVita does things a bit differently. Rather than provide a one-time consultation for new clients, CaraVita builds comprehensive and ongoing care plans using a broadly experienced team of healthcare professionals, each with their own expertise to ensure that aging loved ones can age gracefully in place.
Beyond providing in-home care, Beth notes that “CaraVita is a community business; we help families stay together, moms and dads to remain at home, and children of aging loved ones to rest easy. We do everything we can to make our expertise available to the community, beyond providing care itself.” The company showcases the area’s only, state of the art, “smart house,” a home equipped with a breadth of technology and equipment that allows seniors to remain independent longer.
Back in 1998, CaraVita began with three full-time employees and ten independent contractors. In the interim, the company has converted contractors to employees and now has nearly 200 per diem and full-time employees.
“We’ve recently received a number of wonderful honors for our service to seniors, which is so great, because we are still essentially a small business,” said Cayce. “We rely on community, word of mouth, and reputation to keep our doors open, and provide the servant leadership that our clients need. The Georgia Small Business Person of the Year award has been a tremendous honor, and I’m grateful for the Small Business Administration’s dedication to companies like mine. The SBA is a wonderful resource for businesses, a place to connect with likeminded organizations and business leaders.”
CaraVita was licensed by the state of Georgia in 2012 to maintain an on-site Certified Nursing Assistant School for the training of professional nursing assistants. The school serves as a training facility for CaraVita’s staff, as well as other nursing assistants, in meeting their professional development requirements.
Like most small businesses, CaraVita was adversely impacted by the recent recession. Under Beth’s leadership, she decisively reduced management salaries but not those of the therapists, decided against rate increases, and implemented technological changes to improve efficiencies. The result was a leaner post-recession company poised for growth.
In addition to leading the way as a woman in business entrepreneur, Beth also understands what it means to serve. She is a firm believer in giving back to the local community where she has served as president and currently serving on the board of the Georgia Assisted Living Federation (Georgia-ALFA). In addition, she is the founder of “Care to Learn,” chairman of the Global Missions Committee at Roswell United Methodist Church, and provides services through CaraVita to Second Wind’s Dream Virtual Dementia program.
Beth is the chairman of Georgia-ALFA legislative and regulatory committee and as such was instrumental in helping to pass Georgia’s Aging in Place and Proxy Caregiver legislation, allowing certain health maintenance and medication administration functions to be provided by certified nursing assistants and reducing the cost of care to families.
There are few people in the world like Beth Cayce. She has built a leading homecare agency in the Atlanta area. Every day, scores of seniors rely to Beth and her team to provide the loving service that keeps them happy, healthy and at home. “Beth runs a purpose-driven organization, one that passionately sees to the needs of people who require in-home care. And she owns a profitable business where profits happen to take a back seat to purpose,” Ted Beveridge, Business Consultant, Georgia State University, Small Business Development Center.
Beth is more than a healthcare leader, more than a CEO, more than the mother of two. She is a global change agent; a leader whose lasting impact both at home and abroad touches the lives of a countless many.