About Our Team
Our clients need us to see into their situation and advise them quickly and efficiently. We use our multi-disciplinary experience to look at all of the details and help you form a plan of care to effectively care for the needs of your aging loved one.
We are health care professionals with over 30 years of experience in helping people throughout the Fairfield, Litchfield and New Haven Counties of Connecticut. Although many of our clients are seniors, we also specialize and assist with disabilities such as physical, developmental, brain injury, mental health problems or other chronic or serious illness.
Our goal is to provide enhanced quality of life given any circumstances. The way we begin all conversations with those we are working with is to listen. We emphasize with families and realize that effective care is based on understanding that every person and situation is unique.
Growing Options has an Interdisciplinary team that are experts in the multitude of specials areas that covers all needs to support aging Individuals. Growing Options is proactive in staying up to date with new information, new technologies, new resources and best providers.
We can help create a customized plan that will help ensure that your loved one receives the best care and coordination possible. Our goal is to help give you peace of mind!
MEET YOUR TEAM.
• The Aging Life Care Association (ALCA)
• The New England Chapter of the Aging Life Care Association
• The National Board for Certified Counselors
• The Greater Bridgeport Elder Services Council
• The Connecticut Geriatric Society
• The Western CT Area Agency on Aging Advisory Council
• Board member for the Commission on Aging in Newtown CT
• Board member for the Friends of Newtown Seniors
Lisa Krauss, MA, LPC, NCC, CMC
Founder & Aging Life Care Manager
“Every day in my role as an Aging Life Care Manager, I experience the joy of helping make people’s situations better by providing them with an increased quality of life. I know how fortunate I am because there is no better job satisfaction than that.”
Lisa Krauss, MA, LPC, NCC, CMC is an Aging Life Care Professional with more than 30 years’ experience in the health care field. Lisa’s extensive knowledge of area resources makes her an invaluable asset for families looking for guidance in finding the best care for their aging or disabled relatives.
Lisa has Advanced status in the Aging Life Care Association. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in CT, with a Masters of Arts Degree in Community Counseling from Fairfield University. She holds certificates in gerontology and in death and dying from Sacred Heart University. She attained a Bachelor of Arts Degree with a major in psychology from Hofstra University.
Helping families enable their loved ones to age in the best possible setting is truly my passion. Throughout my many years of working with elderly clients and their families, I have seen firsthand how much a person’s quality of life can be enhanced, once a variety of appropriate measures and services are put into place. Happily, I have learned that the challenges of aging can be met with the best possible outcome for all involved; using knowledge, experience and an intuitive understanding of my clients’ needs.
It is hard to express the pleasure it gives me to help turn around a family situation that at first felt overwhelming and hopeless, but is transformed into a scenario in which a senior’s physical and emotional needs are truly fulfilled. Family members gain peace of mind because they have given their loved one the best life they can attain through their later years.
I adhere to a Life Care philosophy; a long-term, comprehensive approach to creatively and mindfully managing the inevitable transitions of the later years. There is no “one size fits all” solution to aging. Rather, as seniors’ circumstances evolve and their needs change, I will make sure that they are taken care of appropriately every step of the way, always keeping in mind a family’s wishes, financial situation and a variety of other factors.
My priority is always to find just the right setting for each individual client. Aging in place is an ideal that I feel strongly about and I use every possible means to attain this goal, provided it matches my clients’ and families’ wishes.
When the home setting is no longer appropriate for your loved one, I will guide you toward the least restrictive setting. This may be the highest quality assisted living facility close to home or family members. I will help to determine whether skilled care at home is a viable option, or if a nursing home is necessary. In the latter case, I can find a facility that will provide the finest overall care. With my intimate knowledge of area resources, I believe that I am uniquely qualified to assist your family in making these vitally important choices.
Every day in my role as a Geriatric Care Manager, I experience the joy of helping make people’s situations better by providing them with an increased quality of life. I know how fortunate I am because there is no better job satisfaction than that.
Carly Cartisano, LMSW, CMC
Professional Care Manager
“I have always had a passion for helping others, specifically the geriatric population. I believe our society prepares individuals for many of the challenging chapters in life but leaves out one of the most challenging, aging. Working with individuals and their families to help them identify what they want their later years to look like is a privilege. I am very grateful to be able to help people find a balance between what they want and what they need, and to be able to support them in that journey.”
Carly Cartisano, LMSW, CMC has been working with the geriatric population for 13 years. Carly graduated Cum Laude from Sacred Heart University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Geriatric Health and Wellness. Carly also has a Master’s degree in Social Work with a specialization in co-occurring disorders. Carly is a licensed social worker and a certified care manager through the NACCM. Throughout Carly’s career she has worked in many different settings including home care, out patient, and emergency services.
Reedie King, LMSW, CDP
Professional Care Manager
“With family dynamics changing the way they have, older adults are increasingly left to spend their later years isolated and alone. The services we provide and the relationships we build help to bridge that loss and restore hope and dignity for our clients. Often we become like a newfound family and for me that is the most rewarding aspect of this work.”
Reedie is a Licensed Master Social Worker and Certified Dementia Specialist with over 15 years’ experience assisting older adults and their families with changing life circumstances. Reedie earned her MSW from Fordham University and was part of their Andrus Scholar Program focusing specifically on the needs of older adults and their loved ones in Westchester County.
Having worked in both community and assisted living settings Reedie has experience coordinating services relating to dementia care, end of life, family education and mental health. Reedie can provide emotional support as well as help families and their loved ones with options towards making difficult healthcare decisions and provide advocacy and coordination with concrete needs and across healthcare disciplines.
Reedie has a true passion for finding ways to address the biopsychosocial needs of older adults for them to age with dignity, self-worth and a sense of purpose.
“Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”
April Billings, RN
Professional Care Manager
April has worked in the healthcare industry for the past 20 years and became a Licensed Practical Nurse in 2006. She has extensive training in long-term and short-term/sub-acute care. She earned her Associates Degree in Science in 2014 and is actively pursuing her Registered Nurse licensure. April’s passion is nursing and she is committed to her work with the geriatric population. She strives to promote health and wellness while treating each client holistically ensuring quality of life, encouraging independence whenever possible and honoring personal health care decisions and maintaining the client’s integrity.
Professional Care Manager
Brenda Warren RN, BSN, MHA, has over 35 years of experience in healthcare, including hospital, Long Term Care/skilled environment, and the Continuing Care Retirement Community settings. Brenda graduated Magna cum Laude from Western Connecticut State University with both her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing and her Masters in Health Administration. She also trained as a Planetree Coordinator and completed the Wharton University of Pennsylvania Nursing Leadership Program.
I have always considered it a privilege to care for our precious geriatric population as well as those with health and life challenges. My focus is to care for them and their loved ones as if they were my own family. My passion is to utilize my experience in providing optimal service to others.
At Growing Options, we have our own team of companions that are able to provide daily care needs at a reasonable cost. There are often many needed tasks that can be accomplished that does not require a Geriatric Care Managers’ expertise but is invaluable to client and their families. Our companions not only help with safety and every day needs around the house; they also provide vital social interaction. Whether it is playing a game of scrabble, taking them to the park, cooking a wonderful meal or making cookies together such activities impact the quality of life in tremendous ways. The companion will also take care of daily needs such as grocery shopping, picking up medications, coordinating services for home repairs and needed transportation to appointments. The compassion and care our companions provide make it possible to receive comprehensive services and the continuity of one team working together for the unique circumstances that our clients present when they come under our care.
Our Companions are: