People of Helping Hand: Carol
Carol is the Residential Services Manager at our Lightsview residential care home.
Carol’s working life began in the surgical ward of a busy public hospital in China. Her professional and personal journey has led to her to Lightsview and a very different working environment.
In her early twenties, Carol embarked on a new chapter; moving to Adelaide and undergoing transitional training and bridging courses to continue her nursing career. Her first role was in the aged care sector – and she enjoyed the experience so much, she has never left.
‘In a hospital setting, particularly a surgical ward, patients come in for a procedure, then get discharged. There often isn’t time to develop a connection with them’, says Carol.
‘To give an example; when we did handovers at the end of a busy shift, we would refer to Bed 1 or Bed 2, instead of the name of the patient. That wasn’t to be disrespectful, we were providing quality care and support, however the turnover and pace of the hospital was quite intense.’
By comparison, Carol says she noticed the difference working in aged care immediately. ‘It’s so people-centred and rewarding. You are making people happier every day and there is time to develop real connections’, she says.
‘To hear a resident telling their family “Oh Carol’s been so helpful” makes me feel so good.’
Initially, Carol joined the Lightsview team in a Clinical nurse role, then as a Care Services Manager. She took a break working elsewhere, before fate came calling. ‘The connections I had made at Lightsview are what brought me back. I felt like I was coming home.’
If there is one word Carol believes describes Lightsview best – it’s COMMUNITY.
‘We communicate and have a one team approach. When issues arise, we discuss them together. I see my role as supporting the teams and helping them work through a solution. Providing guidance is also important, particularly with new staff who need that direction in how we do things here and what the expectations are. It’s important we are all on the same page.
I do a lot of ‘walk arounds’ checking in with staff face to face, seeing how they are going and what’s on their mind.’
Even random chats with residents have their own rewards. ‘I find there is so much to learn from their experiences and those conversations can influence my own perspective on certain things’, says Carol
‘It’s a demanding role, however, I am very schedule driven, both in my work and home life. I think it’s because I have high expectations of myself. Maybe at some point I’ll be better at finding some “me time” but for now, I am enjoying what I do and there are so many things I want to achieve and experience.’
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