At a ceremony held at the Millicent Civics and Art Centre on Saturday 10 August, Resthaven Limestone Coast Community Services Coordinator, Fiona Thompson, was awarded the Millicent Business Community Association’s award for Employee of the Year.
‘Fiona was nominated by the daughter of a gentleman who had been referred to Resthaven Limestone Coast Community Services by My Aged Care’, says Sue McKechnie, Executive Manager Community Services.
‘After suffering some poor health, he was very reluctant to accept that he needed any formal support.’
‘He had received several visits from other providers, but it was only when Fiona visited him with her kind approach, that he agreed to “consider” support in the future.’
‘This is a wonderful example of the human face of working with older people in need in the community, and the profound effect that just one person’s approach can have on their future.’
His daughter nominated Fiona, and in her nomination, she explained:
“After months of frustration trying to get my elderly father to accept home care, Fiona took the time to listen and I felt that she not only heard what I was saying, but she also understood.
“She was never too busy, and conversations never felt rushed, because she took the time and she cared.
“She was also the first person that dad seemed willing to at least listen to, even if not accept help from. It was a huge step for us and our situation, and I can’t thank her enough for the kindness and compassion and patience that Fiona showed dad, mum, and myself on many occasions.”
On being named the winner, Fiona said, ‘It was very unexpected! Before the announcement, I had not known who or why I had been nominated.’
‘To say I was shocked to win out of 42 nominees of the largest category in the awards is an understatement. I was humbled by the kind words of the nomination, and quite emotional.’
‘I enjoy my work, and feel that everyone who works in aged care works hard to achieve the best outcomes for each client, or just provide information to people to point them it the right direction.
‘I feel lucky to be able to work in an environment that enables me to be “creatively kind”. I do not do this job to be recognised in this way, but it was a good feeling to know that the work we do is appreciated.’