This year, National Aged Care Employee Day 2020 (ACED 2020) falls on Friday 7 August, with the call going out to every community across the nation to honour aged care workers and volunteers and say 'thanks for caring'. To honour their staff and volunteers, VMCH are hosting Celebration Week, where each day VMCH is celebrating staff from across their service areas: Disability Services, Retirement Living and Affordable Housing, At-Home Aged Care, Volunteers, and Op Shops and Residential Aged Care.
Janelle Clark is one such staff member, working in the Corpus Christi Retirement Village. 'This year due to COVID-19 and the restrictions on ANZAC Day, the residents all lined up in their drives for a minute silence and I played the pipes for them,' she recalls. 'It’s tough going for the residents with the worry of COVID; it was nice to do something special so we could still remember our heroes.'
The week is a chance to highlight the important work being carried out by VMCH staff like Janelle, and serves as a timely reminder of the work provided by front liners during these challenging times of COVID-19.
For many, it may be a time of great difficulty, but it's also a time to celebrate the good work done by the staff of aged care facilities, according to Archbishop Peter's video message of encouragement to VMCH staff. Speaking from St Patrick’s Cathedral, Archbishop Peter filmed a message to encourage the staff of VMCH for their Celebration Week while the city is in lockdown following the outbreak of Covid-19 in Victoria, which has affected people in vulnerable situations and the wider aged care industry.
‘This coming week will be an opportunity for
celebration. It might seem a strange thing in this time of such difficulty
and struggle for so many. But nonetheless, we do have things to celebrate.
think of all of the works that you the staff and the volunteers of Villa
Maria Catholic Homes are doing. Those in aged care facilities, which is in such a
risky situation, and those working with the disabled in their circumstances;
for those of you in the critical incident team, and all the staff and
leadership. For all of you.
‘Can I just offer a word of thank you? It's intense,
it's exhausting, and it's risky. Yet you are doing precisely what our Lord has asked
of us – that we might in charity reach out to those in need.
‘So I just want to assure you of my prayer and support and
encouragement at this time. I hope in different ways you might be able to find
times of rest and renewal. In amongst your family when you're away from the
worst situation, but also during those times that it might be in your giving an
opportunity that you might receive as well.
‘So go well in celebration week, to the leadership team, to
all of you staff in our aged care facilities, disability facilities in our
volunteer circumstances, to all of you, thank you.’