The HESTA Aged Care Awards for 2017, sponsored by ME bank, were announced last week, each of the winners awarded a share of the $30,000 prize pool. The award is devised to acknowledge those who are helping older Australians in creative and innovative ways.
HESTA promotes and funds aged care services in Australia, supporting creative and hard-working teams. This year, a chef who created a fine dining experience for residents, an induction program for Indigenous workers and an organisation which provides residents with art programs, were awarded with the three prizes.
“This year’s winners have challenged the status quo and created innovative services and programs that rise to the challenge of providing high-quality care to the growing number of people in our community,” said HESTA CEO Debbie Blakey.
The winners were announced live from the awards night in Adelaide, selected from 12 finalists. They were presented in three categories: the Team Innovation Award, the Individual Distinction Award and the Outstanding Organisation Award.
Team Innovation Award
The Team Innovation Award went to the Aged Care Indigenous Induction Program (ACIIP) from Crest NT. They developed the ACIIP with the aim of supporting the aged care industry in the Northern Territory, which is experiencing a lack of skilled workers. It provides a variety of educational resources for employers to use in training and inducting new employees who have an Indigenous background.
“People work so hard in the aged care industry and often don’t get recognised. This is why being recognised for our impact is so rewarding,” said Crest NT Director Sally Morris.
“And with the money, we’re planning to develop an additional resource to add to the induction kit.”
Individual Distinction Award
Gordon Manuel from the Mark Moran Group in NSW was awarded the Individual Distinction Award by HESTA.
He was given the prize for his work creating a fine-dining experience for residents in aged care facilities. His work includes creating meals which are flavourful in spite of dietary modifications which residents must adhere to.
He creates food which tastes good, looks good and is good, promoting dignity, equality and fun, and encouraging residents to enjoy their food once more.
“It makes people happy, food is very important to people. When they move into residential facilities or aged care it’s really important to give them a great experience. Food really helps shape this.” Gordon said.
Outstanding Organisation Award
The Outstanding Organisation Award went to Southern Cross Care (SA & NT), who partner with local arts festivals in Adelaide, aiming to entertain and engage the residents in an arts program. They bring arts activities into their home to promote well-being and healthy ageing, letting the residents experience the benefits of creative expression.
“When you think about art, you think about heart – it really helps our residents have fun, everyone feels they can express themselves, and everyone has a purpose and a sense of achievement,” said the Director of Operations Jo Boylan.
Photos by HESTA.