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Duplin County family runs assisted living home

READ MORE: Duplin County family runs assisted living home
ROSE HILL -- A Duplin County family is making a difference in the lives of people who may need it most. When Joyce Miller's mother died in 2000 Miller inherited her mother's house in Rose Hill. Miller said, "After I got the house, then I was wondering to myself, what was I going to do with the house." With the support of her husband Miller decided to make the house into a home -- an alternative living home, for people born with severe mental handicaps. This decision came from the heart as two of the miller's four children were born with severe mental retardation. Miller worked in home healthcare for years and used that experience to license and open miller's alternative living, an option for people looking to place their loved ones someplace other than a facility. "You want them to feel at home. You want them to know that they're cared for," Miller said. "We love what we do and we have a personal interest in what we're doing because of our own kids." Right now the only residents at the alternative living home are the Millers' daughter Kim and their son Michael. Workers like Patra Lesane are there around the clock to care for them. Lesane said, "It's just one big happy family, that's all it is. Everybody gets along good." Lesane works one-on-one with Michael toward achieving a list of goals. "The main one he's having trouble with is learning to button up his shirt. He has a little problem with trying to grab the little buttons," she said. Miller stresses the personal care she's devoted to providing. "I love doing it and I love working with other people's family members, to give something back to the community." "It's rewarding to know you're helping somebody every day that's reaching out to you," Miller said. Miller and her employees are also licensed to make house calls if people need a extra hand caring for their mentally challenged loved ones.

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