Meet Helen, one of our passionate volunteers who, for the past year, has been dedicating her time and energy supporting our residents and team at Regis Macleod. Helen’s father Patrick has been living at Regis Macleod for four years and his daughter’s visits to the Home motivated her.
“She was inspired by the wonderful work the teams were doing and she wanted to do something to give back to Regis,” Patrick said.
There are many ways Helen gets involved throughout the Home to help residents and the teams. She spends one-on-one time with residents to connect with them on a more personal level, as well as providing them with an opportunity to share stories and have someone listen to them.
One of Helen’s favourite ways to connect with residents is through sharing books. One resident in particular, Diane, is a voracious reader and Helen loves swapping recommendations and discussing their favourite novels. Helen appreciates that volunteering provides her with an opportunity to get to know residents on a deeper level. She looks forward to spending time doing crosswords with Chandra, and talking with Sarah about her youth growing up in Wales whilst listening to Welsh music in the background.
Not only this, but Helen enjoys showing new residents around the garden and library to welcome them into their new home. Helen finds residents benefit from her time volunteering at the Home because they have another visitor on top of their usual family and friends.
Volunteering within aged care is a rewarding experience for Helen, but it comes with its challenges at times. Helen said the main challenge she faces is how to best respond when residents are having bad days.
“I’ve found that being a listening ear for residents when they’re having problems is important for them to feel heard and understood,” Helen said.
Care is at the heart of everything done at Regis and Helen exemplifies this in her attitude towards giving back to the community.
“Care means thinking about the whole person. Thinking about their physical, mental, social, intellectual and emotional wellbeing,” she said. “Valuing each person for their strengths and supporting people to do what is important to them.”
Helen is grateful for the care the teams at Regis Macleod provide for her dad Patrick and that she’s been able to help them by volunteering.
Over the past year, Helen has felt privileged to be welcomed into the Regis Macleod community. She said one of the most memorable moments was the wonderful lunch at the MCG before the AFL Grand Final where Kevin Sheedy spoke.
“All the residents had their photo taken with the Premiership Cup and had an absolute blast, it was such an exciting day to be a part of!”
Volunteering has allowed Helen to get to know other residents and help her dad be a part of the Regis Macleod community. Helen said she “feels very accepted and appreciated.”
We thank Helen for valuable contributions to Regis Macleod.