The last thing a family needs to worry about after losing a loved one is how they’re going to clear out and pack up a house. This entrepreneurial duo is working to lift that burden from their clients.
Two Port Jefferson, NY sisters, Kim Bigby and Happie Dunn-Henry, are on a personal mission to provide transition services to support families experiencing planned or unexpected losses of loved ones.
After experiencing multiple occasions of moving and clearing out the homes of their own relatives who passed away, the sisters opened up their own Caring Transitions franchise, to help local community members with services such as senior moves, downsizing, and online estate sales.
The sister duo shared their personal story of losing a mother and a father with BLACK ENTERPRISE and the experiences that led them to extend such support to others.
The mission: ‘Find A Way Make A Way’
“The mission behind our Caring Transitions services is to streamline and simplify a very complex and personal situation for our clients,” Happie said. “We use a deliberate approach to access our clients’ unique needs and deliver services to them based on their timeline.”
Their main goal through Caring Transitions is to assist their clients with the business of moving and downsizing during their emotional times of need that includes the death of a loved one, divorce, or retirement.
The sisters follow the mission “Find A Way Make A Way,” a statement Happie said her late father always said.
Dealing with the loss of loved ones is nothing strange to the sister duo.
“I share with our clients all the time how my mom is my ‘why.’ I helped move her multiple times before she passed away and it was overwhelming and stressful for both of us. When she passed away suddenly in January 2020, I was not prepared to take her off the respirator, plan a funeral, or pack up her apartment in California,” Bigby shared.
“My stepfather and I were blessed enough to have Happie with us for support. She was our Caring Transitions before we knew it existed. I learned about Caring Transitions several months after losing my mom,” Bigby continued.
The Caring Transitions services resonated with Bigby’s personal emotions as she dealt with grief and the business of death, simultaneously.
“I don’t want anyone to go through that, but when they do, I want to be there to assist them. I want them to be able to focus on their family and take comfort knowing Caring Transitions of Port Jefferson will care for their family and home as if it were our own,” she added.
“The most valuable experience has been similar to many of our clients and their families. My family and I have personally experienced the immense difficulty of losing loved ones and the hardship of dealing with their home and belongings. It’s one of my personal goals to bring peace and solace to families navigating similar challenges and various seasons of Transitions,” Dunn-Henry added.
“Caring Transitions of Port Jefferson uses their transitions service to give families back the time and energy to grieve and process the loss of their loved one by taking on the physical work, planning, and strategy that is needed,” Dunn-Henry said.
The sisters provide services that cover every detail of a transition, including decluttering, clean-outs, packing, move management, unpacking, resettling, suggesting trusted realtors, and both in-home and online estate sales. They also provide a host of other customizable options that include online auctions, space planning, and cross-state and cross-country moves.
“Quite often our clients need multiple service solutions and aren’t aware of that. We take pride in being able to help from planning to packing and resettling,” Dunn-Henry said.
The sisters help clients find a custom comprehensive plan that they assist them with from the initial consultation to the end of the project. Each project is tailored to fit the needs of the family, using both experience and expertise to guide clients to the services that best align with their specific situations.
“The first and most important step is to call us to schedule a free consultation. We sit down with each client so we can meet them, see the home, and discuss their needs,” Bigby said.
The assessment is followed by a complimentary in-home consultation.
“We assess their needs and handle executing the plan we created together,” Bigby said.
“Throughout the process, we have various touch-points with our clients to ensure that our plan is continually meeting their unique needs and specified timelines. We encourage our clients to give us feedback throughout the process,” Dunn-Henry added.
Get involved as Caring Transitions expands
“We would love to be able to expand our territory in the future so we can provide more jobs and serve more people in our community,” Bigby said.
Local community members are encouraged to get involved with Caring for a Cause: Supporting Local Partnerships, a program to assist chosen local non-profit organizations with raising funds and awareness of its mission.
Caring Transitions services aren’t limited to seniors only.
For additional information, call 631-880-5300, email KBigby@CaringTransitions.com, HHenry@CaringTransitions.com, or visit the Caring Transitions website.