It’s no secret that aged care staff work incredibly hard. And unfortunately, much of what we see in the news these days are negative stories. Janine, lifestyle coordinator at our Wantirna aged care residence, admits sometimes she’s so run off her feet she wonders if she makes a difference. Until her colleague Cris handed her the local paper last week…
“I was reading the paper for ideas to create change and add diversity to our activity calendar for our residents when I stumbled across a lovely letter from the wife of one of our residents who had passed away,” Janine says. “It changed everything. I am so grateful I’m in this position with a great team around me to be able to make such a difference to our residents’ lives. As much as some days are tough, I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”
Here’s an abridged version of Lilian’s letter, shared with her permission.
“My husband George was a resident in VMCH, Wantirna for six months. Sadly, he passed away on November 18, 2021. He had dementia and other problems. I believe most people think that all aged care homes are the same, and some do have a bad reputation. My children and I could not be happier with the love and care shown to George at VMCH by the wonderful Manager and staff, especially in the last few days of his life.
“I frequently asked George if he was happy and if the staff were good to him. He always said that the food was very good and everyone was friendly and kind. He often asked if he could come home, so sometimes I would leave in tears but if the staff noticed me, they would comfort me and assure me that George was in the right place… I could tell that they truly cared about George and his welfare. The lifestyle co-ordinator was particularly fond of George as he always liked a singalong and she took many photos and videos for me. During lockdown this was a great comfort.
“Near the end of George’s life, the Pastor was particularly supportive, and my family and I felt respected and understood. During his last days many staff came into his room to farewell him and pay their respects, often crying with us. We never felt alone, our grief was shared and we feel blessed to have had such caring, kind, thoughtful people surrounding us during such a very sad time.
“I would like to recommend VMCH, Wantirna to anyone looking for aged care. It is a difficult decision to have to make, as there are many choices available. We were very lucky to have picked this home and I cannot speak highly enough of the facility and the staff.”
Thank you Lilian for your kind words…