“I more or less do anything they ask me to do. I get a lot of hugs!”
Tell us about one of your clients.
I have one client who is a lovely lady who doesn't have much family support. There's a gentleman in the village who has helped her tremendously. He put a new letterbox in, he’s always there for her, helps her do the shopping. He's a lovely man. But he always refuses to take any payment.
So I said to her, “Carolyn, how about we bake a banana cake for him, and you can take it around to him to say ‘thank-you’.” So the next Monday I got my equipment, all the stuff, two baking tins, my kitchen scales. Carolyn sat with me in the kitchen and watched as I worked. We baked two cakes. One for our gentleman friend, and one for Carolyn. It was lovely. And I noticed there was a glint in her eye. So I said to her “would you like to lick the spoon?” She replied “can I?” I said “of course you can.”
I finished up the preparation, and put the cakes in the oven. When I turned around she had finished off all of the icing on the spoon, and everything left in the bowl as well! And she was so happy - it was lovely, she was just like a big kid.
What is your role?
I'm a care worker - I've been with Anglicare for 10 years. I always walk in with a smile on my face. If you do that, the rest of the day usually goes pretty well. I help with everything - showering, dressing, shopping, doctor’s appointments, brushing their hair, making cakes…(laughing)...I more or less do anything they ask me to do. I get a lot of hugs!
How did you become involved in care at home?
I used to be a bookkeeper. But after many years, I had enough. A friend suggested I might enjoy working in aged care. I noticed they were advertising, so I just decided to give it a go. They were wonderful. They looked after me and trained me, and here I am. I love that Anglicare gives me complete trust. I also really value the support of other care workers. And I have learned a lot from my clients, from their life stories.
Do you feel supported by Anglicare?
Definitely. Even though I don't have an office and I'm on the road every day, I know that if I pick up the phone someone is always there to talk to, to see if I'm ok, or to help me. So that’s great.
I’ve learned that a big part of the job is just to watch and learn. I have a client who I have looked after for 2 years. The other day, I just noticed something had changed with her. So in that instance I was able to call my manager and we were able to bring in the nurse, and we could start to see what was going on, and to get her a hand.
There’s always support to deal with those things. I love my job. I absolutely love it!
Thanks Sue for sharing your story with us. Some names and details have been changed to protect privacy.
If Sue’s role sounds appealing, why not visit Anglicare’s Careers page for more information on working for Anglicare.