In Ingrida Jones's native Lithuania the thought of having someone else look after an ageing family member is unheard of.
The Weary Dunlop Retirement Village Serviced Apartment Activities Coordinator says when she grew up in Lithuania retirement villages and aged care were non-existent.
“I saw my mum looking after her mum, and I saw a lot of people looking after their mums and dads, so for me that was the natural way to do things,” she says.
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In fact, despite more than five years’ experience in the aged care sector in Australia, Ingrida says she has only recently changed her mind about caring for her own mother.
The change is due to Ryman Healthcare, she says.
“Up until I stepped inside Weary Dunlop I was thinking I will look after my mum, but now after seeing what Ryman does I’m so impressed I’m happy for my mum to come here, and I know she will be 100 per cent happy.”
For the past two months Ingrida has experienced first-hand what the village has to offer staff and residents.
“Ryman is my vision of how aged care should look, it’s amazing,” she says.
As the Serviced Apartment Activities Coordinator Ingrida plans and runs events, outings and activities for serviced apartment residents.
While the responsibility lies with Ingrida, she says planning activities is very much a collaborative process.
“I am planning the calendars with the residents, because this is their home and they know what they do and don’t like doing,” she says.
“It’s important my residents have a big say in what happens.”
This sense of involvement is important to foster because it is something that is already strong at the village.
“I’m really impressed by the teams here at Weary Dunlop, everybody is connected to one another, it’s really wonderful.
“To me, it’s like a big, friendly Lithuanian family,” she laughs.