THE inaugural Aged Care Employee Day kicked off in Beaudesert with employees at Whiddon Beaudesert Star treated to a free meal and thank you packages today.
The initiative is the brainchild of the Whiddon Group and will be celebrated annually all over Australia after gaining support from industry and political leaders including Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack.
Mr McCormack said it was important to recognise the hard work of people in the aged care sector.
“Aged care is becoming increasingly important as the community’s median age continues to increase,” he said.
“A dedicated day to recognise the selfless work of these upstanding community members, whether it be in administration or as a registered nurse or anywhere in between, is a fantastic way to show our appreciation for all the work they do for the older residents in our communities.”
Aged care minister Ken Wyatt said he also supported the initiative.
“I congratulate the Whiddon Group and all their staff on this inaugural Aged Care Employee Day,” he said.
“A proud and professional workforce is the foundation for quality aged care, with staff dedicated to their residents and focused on making caring a career of choice.
“You deserve the highest community appreciation every day of the year, as you care for the older Australians who built the nation we cherish today.”
Sydney-based Whiddon quality manager, visiting Beaudesert for the celebration, said that while registered and enrolled nurses were celebrated every year in May, eight in 10 aged care employees were not included in that group but were equally valued for the jobs they do.
“Nurses are recognised in May, on Florence Nightingale’s birthday but we wanted to extend an official thank-you to all our employees,” he said.
The dining room at the Beaudesert aged care facility was festooned with balloons and a colourful selection of lollies.
Lunch was provided as well as each employee receiving a gift bag containing wine and chocolates.Leisure co-ordinator Robert Campbell said the day was to recognise all 119 staff members at Whiddon Beaudesert Star when they came on shift.
Those on morning and afternoon shifts were treated to free Subway and free pizza will be delivered for the staff on night shift.