The power of a warm welcome
Jenny Moore is HBH Senior Living’s social worker and she also has another equally important role: meeting with families when a parent needs aged care or when they’re looking to move them from elsewhere. Jenny meets with the family, “holds their hands” along the way and steps them through the process, from greeting them on their arrival right through to making sure their beloved Mum or Dad is settling in.
“It is not an easy decision to move into aged care, whether it’s the resthome or hospital, so my role is to support the families (who are often making the decision) and their parent on their journey. It’s a fairly complex process that includes a needs assessment, a lot of information and form filling. I aim to make this as easy as possible and to support them through the transition.
Jenny says she’s “a bit unusual” as most aged care facilities don’t appoint a social worker for this role, but she finds that her background is enormously helpful and she uses her knowledge and skills every day.
HBH Senior Living has a waiting list, which can mean Jenny gets to know the families very well by the time a place becomes available. “While there is a wait, the silver lining is that new residents have time to adjust and we know each other well by the time they arrive. Our aim is to not just to support the new resident to settle in, but also their families – they’re really important and we keep in touch with them.”
A new initiative last year was the introduction of a buddy system to help new residents settle in. “This was an idea that the residents came up with,” explains Jenny. “It fits well with our Eden Philosophy as it provides meaning for the buddy and gives them a sense of purpose, plus it’s also beneficial to the new resident.”
Jenny loves her role because she provides continuity for people from point of contact right through to admission and beyond. Some people come to see her just for information for future planning, while others apply to go on the waiting list.
“I feel very fortunate – it’s lovely to be able to help residents and families transition to a new home,” enthuses Jenny. “So many of the families comment on the lovely atmosphere at HBH Senior Living, but for me, providing people with a warm welcome and support as they settle in to their new home is a privilege.”