Tender Loving Care Adult Day Health Center


Article from Pelican Newspaper, September 2, 2016 

TLC adult day care is the answer to many caregivers’ prayers. It’s an impeccably clean, well-run licensed day center; a home away from home for adults with special needs, Alzheimer’s disease, memory loss and clients frail with medical issues. Care givers who work or need respite can count on a day or a week of recreational activities, medical care, and personalized programs for their loved ones.
Listed as a resource by the Aging and Disability Resource Center of Broward County [ADRC] and State of Florida Department of Elder Affairs, TLC is located at 611 NW 31st Ave. in Pompano Beach and is owned and administered by Darlene Ponder who is a registered nurse. She is assisted by a staff of CNAs (Certified Nurse Assistants) who can speak to those attending the program in Creole, Spanish and English.

Before opening this center Ponder was a hospital RN specializing in surgical/ operating room nursing. She says, “ I gave up my hospital nursing career to open this business after taking care of both of my aging grandparents until they died. I decided I wanted to help families who deal with care giving 24/7. I have a passion for what I do because I’ve been there. I know what caregivers go through. Being a caregiver is a very demanding and sometimes thankless challenge.”

TLC offers very flexible schedules to adults 18 years and up. Most days there are about 20 participants in the center, some come for the entire 5-day week and others come for as many days as needed. While there, they enjoy a schedule of stimulating group activities including singing, exercises [yoga, Zumba, ring toss, basketball] , some current events, inspirational reading and bingo, their favorite game. For those with special needs, nursing or personal care assistance is available. Ponder says, “Our goal is to assist caregivers in maintaining their loved one at home as long as possible. We help to postpone or even eliminate the need for placement in a nursing facility by offering quality day care to those with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, brain and spinal injury, dementia, physical and developmental disabilities, stroke and incontinency.”

Catered meals are part of the day care offered from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Breakfast might be an English muffin, egg, fruit and coffee. A typical lunch is oven-fried chicken with a vegetable, roll, milk and fruit for dessert; afternoon snacks, yogurt or fruit.

Asked how participants get to this attractive homelike center, Ponder explains, “Some are dropped off by family. Others arrive by transit or medical transportation. I assist clients in arranging for transportation and hope to soon provide my own transportation. Many of our participants are funded by government programs. We now have an Alzheimer’s Disease Initiative Grant for persons with dementia or Alzheimer’s. We partner with VetAssist to get financial assistance for caregivers of Veterans.”

Caregivers say:
Marsha Holbert Roberson says, “My mother-inlaw, Shirley, suffers from Alzheimer’s Disease. She is a participant in the program at TLC for four hours Monday through Friday and has been for over a year. She loves going to this home away from home where they treat her like family and stimulate her with many activities. As the caregiver, it is wonderful for me to share her care. I get this free time to do the many things I need to do.”

Monica James has had her sister in the TLC program for two years, five days a week. She says, “I work full time so this is a great help to me. My sister looks forward to participating in the many activities they have and she especially loves the singing. The service and staff are excellent and she gets a lot of tender loving care.”