Home Articles Posted by Michelle Royce
Today September 14 is RUOK? Day, our national day of action dedicated to reminding everyone that any day is the day to ask, ‘Are you OK?’ and support those struggling with life.
Our Twilight Family came together to share cupcakes and some conversation and have a bit of fun.
While we as aged care workers are fortunate to generally have the skills and training to understand how to support the needs of our older community, RUOK? Day does a wonderful job of reminding us that ALL of us can face challenges and that this simple question can start a conversation that can change someone’s outlook on life.
If you know someone is struggling, ask if they have a trusted person to talk to, enquire if they have access to professional support or encourage them to connect with a confidential service like Lifeline on 13 11 14 or text 0477 13 11 14.
Dementia Action Week 2023 is from Monday 18 September to Sunday 24 September, with World Alzheimer’s Day occurring on Thursday 21 September.
This year’s theme is Act Now for a Dementia-Friendly Future.
Since 2019, the focus of the Dementia Action Week campaign has been to reduce stigma and discrimination experienced by people living with dementia and their carers.
Communities that take action to become dementia-friendly have:
At Twilight, we are fortunate to have renowned global Dementia Specialist/author/researcher Leah Bisiani -MHlthSc/DipBus/RN1/Dementia and Aged Care Consultant on our team. Leah brings over 35 years of experience, in aged/dementia care, providing ongoing consultation, guidance, support and education for our whole organisation, as well as for residents and families.
Do you have any questions about understanding dementia and engaging with people living with dementia? Ask Leah!
You can follow Leah on Instagram at @uplifting_dementia or visit her website https://shimmeringspirit.wixsite.com/uplifting-dementia
You’d never guess the weather outside Glengarry was blue skies and balmy as residents celebrated Christmas in July with snowflakes, karaoke carols, and proper Christmas tucker. Thanks to the daughter of one of our residents, this special day delighted and brought together Twilight staff, residents, and family members just like the real thing.
And the best part?
We get to do it all over again in December!
Thanks to our Glengarry Twilight family for spreading the spirit of Christmas, all year long.
You’re at home, with Twilight.
There are so many beautiful moments that happen every day in our homes, we’d like to start sharing some of them.
When residents come to live with us at Twilight, it’s more than “coming into care”. They are starting life in a new home and truly becoming part of another family. Often, as we go about our daily tasks caring for these people and sharing their lives, we don’t realise what this means to their first family.
John ’Sean’ Kelly was part of our Glengarry family and staff were delighted and surprised to reconnect with his daughter Stephanie when she dropped in to honour his life and his passing with those who also cared about her dad.
“I wanted to mark the first anniversary of my dad’s passing by remembering and acknowledging his second family – his Glengarry one.” Stephanie said. “I was so chuffed that August and Elizabeth were working on the day (16.8 – last Wednesday) I dropped in with the cake. I know how much they cared for and loved Dad. The feeling was so mutual for Dad too. I loved seeing his face light up around August and Elizabeth. They made the final years of his life more joyous and peaceful. Such angels! All the staff, from kitchen, to administration and to all his carers, they ALL made such a difference to his quality of life, especially in the final days of his journey.”
A beautiful reminder that what we do matters. Every time we support our residents in whatever way our role dictates, be it care, lifestyle, administration, cleaning, catering, maintenance or as a volunteer, we are making a positive difference in someone’s life and are part of their family.
Thanks so much to Stephanie for her permission to share this story.
In April 2023, well-known Dural residential care home Lady of Grace changed hands, and operations were assumed by Twilight Aged Care.
Some words from Neil Wendt, our Twilight CEO:
“For Twilight, Lady of Grace is a very nice fit as we specialise in small boutique size operations. Our existing four homes (at Gladesville, Hunters Hill, Gordon and Mosman) are all 35 to 45 bed homes.
Our philosophy is based on the principal that smaller homes allow for a family feel, where staff and residents can form a close bond. We provide our own unique “Twilight Family Model of Care” with key principles being; that the individuality of our residents is valued; that residents live in a home, not an institution, supported to live the life they choose with purpose and meaning, enjoying freshly cooked meals where their health and wellbeing are our priority.
We achieve these objectives through getting to personally know our residents, their individual story and what brings them fulfilment, and connecting with them as valued members of our community. All of our processes are designed to create an environment where residents feel safe, cared for and ‘at home.’
With our wealth of experience, we can draw on a wide range of resources which are already offered in our other homes, knowing that they are beneficial and will enhance the quality of life of residents. Lady of Grace residents now have an expanded range of activities, including The Dance Man, Resparke, silent disco and listening programs, creative outlets with art therapy, fun physical activity such as cardio drumming, as well as bus outings and other events.
Our team spend time with residents and their families to understand each personal story, which then allows us to better tailor our care and activities to their individual wants and preferences. We also celebrate events that are special to this specific community, like the recent Italian National Day at which we provided a pizza oven, Italian chef and Italian singer.
Our Twilight team have embraced the new addition in Dural. Mari Reyes has been acting Facility Manager at the home since May 2023, moving from Hunters Hill Village to support the transition, along with a rotation of team members from all areas of our homes including catering and recreation officers, as well as carers and nurses. With all the positive feedback received at a recent Resident Family and Friends meeting, there is a lot to look forward to.”
Elaine cooked up her favourite dish of Chicken Risotto.
Rahul says “We organized a delightful cooking session for our resident Elaine ( Horton House), and the result was absolutely heartening.
Our resident Elaine eagerly participated in the cooking session, showcasing her culinary talents.
The atmosphere was filled with laughter, joy, and a sense of togetherness.
Elaine was fully engaged and relished every moment of the activity.”
Residents and staff sampled the finish product and all agreed it was delicious.
“I’m so proud of how giving and kind our Twilight staff are. Their focus is always on ensuring our residents feel at home.” Neil Wendt, Twilight CEO.
On Monday August 7, 2023, Twilight Aged Care honoured and celebrated our staff teams. With a gift and a staff luncheon, we said #thanksforcaring to our fabulous staff members, from catering to care, from RN’s to FM’s, from cleaning and maintenance to recreational activity officers and gardeners. Without all of you, our frail aged and vulnerable residents would not receive the excellent care they deserve.
As well as celebrating our current staff, we said goodbye to John, from Hunters Hill Village, after eight years of wonderful service. Best wishes for the future, John!
Lisa Vale is currently acting as Twilight’s Lifestyle and Volunteer Coordinator. In this role, Lisa reports to Staff Services Manager Emily Hams. Emily caught up with Lisa recently to chat about her journey with Twilight.
Emily: It is wonderful that you are acting in the Coordinator role for us Lisa. I am impressed how you started as a volunteer and now you are a Coordinator. Can you share with us some of your story?
Lisa: I actually started as a volunteer. My father was unwell in Queensland and I was not able to see him at the time. I was worried that he may be feeling lonely. It made me think about elderly people and how some would appreciate a visit.
I have lived all of my life in Gladesville and did my schooling locally at Gladesville Public School and Malvena High. So, I googled ‘local aged care homes in Gladesville’ and Glades Bay Gardens came up first. I called them to say I was interested in volunteering as a visitor.
The first resident I was ‘buddied’ with was Jill. I came once a week to visit her and talk about life. I also brought along my son Ethan. He was a big hit with everyone here and used to wander around talking to everyone.
After around about 5 months Sai asked if I would like to consider a role as a Recreational Activities Officer. Initially it was only one day a week, but I loved it. The work kept growing and you (Emily) suggested I consider some study in that field. I enrolled in the Certificate 4 Lifestyle & Leisure course at Meadowbank TAFE. I was working three days a week then and the course took 6 months to successfully complete.
Not long after that I found myself working full time and also covering in the admin and concierge roles when required. Now, almost three years later, I am acting in the Coordinator role.
Emily: What have you liked best about your time with Twilight?
Lisa: I have loved every role I have been a part of at Twilight, as it feels like my second home with all my grandmothers and grandfathers a part of it.
Honestly, I think the residents really make the role and their appreciation of what you do for them is endless and heartfelt. I think my RAO role was so fulfilling it honestly was the best job I have ever held.
Emily: Are there any moments that stand out?
Lisa: I think the most outstanding moments at Twilight are Culture of the Month days at Glades Bay Gardens, as we all get involved with the residents with dress ups and great music, dancing and Ramina’s cooking.
I also love catching up with Jill (pictured) when I can. It was her birthday on 6 October and it was nice to share some of that day with her.