The new manager at Shanagolden Residential Aged Care, in Pakenham, is not new to VMCH. Rose Andrew worked at VMCH’s Berwick Residential Aged Care for seven years before leaving to take on other opportunities in the profession.
It’s great to have you back at VMCH. What inspired your return?
I love the ethos of VMCH. I love their mission to provide a service, a home for the elderly for the disabled and for the marginalised and for those people without homes. That lines up with my own personal look on life – wanting to help people in the community. That was perhaps one of the biggest things.
What did you do before joining Shanagolden?
I’ve been in aged care for about 25 years. I was a registered nurse on the floor and I worked for Villa Maria in Berwick for seven years. I left about 13 years ago and so I then joined Bupa – a private aged care provider – where I was a care home manager for many years at different homes. During that time, I have also done quality work with Bupa and I also had the opportunity to work in London in a care home for 12 months.
I then decided it was time for a change and looked to see what VMCH was up to.
What is one myth about working in aged care?
The myth that I hear about aged care is that aged care is something you think about at the end of your career. Aged care nursing is not seen and held in as high esteem as it should.
Aged care is a career in itself. We’re not a side arm of nursing. It is a profession, a career and we’re here to give people the best possible care we can. It is busy. It is exciting, it’s challenging and it’s very rewarding.
What’s your wish for the people we support in aged care now and into the future?
We need to look at our processes and make sure it’s about person first, which is what Montessori is about. Treating people as individuals. It’s about putting the person first and the process second. That is the centre of everything we do.
I like to tell my staff that in the midst of their busy times to remember that every person is an individual, with individual needs and they all have a story to tell. We need to take time to listen to their stories and listen to them.
We can’t resolve all their issues, but we can certainly listen.
What do you love doing outside of work?
I love to travel – working in London gave me a travel bug. For me, my family is very important and my friends. I love to do craft and I love to read.
Who is your hero and why?
My kids are my heroes because we’re a close family. I lost my husband eight years ago. It’s really drawn us close together. I’ve seen my kids go through their grief and how they’ve managed life and they are amazing adults.