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Working at SwanCare: Our People Reflect on their Experiences

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

From left to right: Velvet Barrett, Jake Dyer, Sue (Shuhao) Yang, Marie Dadson, Dana Wilkinson, Jovy Tesani, Satish Kumar, Rachel Giancaspro, Zoran Pusaric, and Debra Mitchell.

This Friday until Sunday (August 16-18 2019), SwanCare will be at WA’s largest Careers and Employment Event, the SkillsWest Careers Expo. Isabella and Priska from our People and Culture Team will be meeting hundreds of students, graduates, job seekers and professionals to discuss career pathways here at SwanCare.

In preparing for SkillsWest, we reached out to our SwanCare team across all skill sets and facilities to share some insights about their role. Here’s what they said:


Velvet Barrett (Activities Officer)

What does teamwork mean to you?

“Teamwork means there’s no such thing as, ‘That's not a part of my job.’ You help where you can and in return, others help you. The concept of treating others how you’d like to be treated is important to everything we do. We stick by each other and help each other out in any situation. No one is left behind.”


What makes you smile at SwanCare?

“The best part of my day is seeing the residents who I haven't seen for a while. It’s wonderful to see the smile on their face when they recognise us. I enjoy sitting with them and chatting for a little bit longer because this has a positive impact on their day.”


Sathish Kumar (Head Chef)

How can you be creative in your role?  

“A common misconception is that an aged care menu has to be bland and ‘pureed’. When it comes to care, few people consider the role of hospitality staff. In catering for residents, we have many restrictions - but this doesn’t mean we have to compromise on flavour and quality. I look into various ways I can cater for our residents, who can have many dietary restrictions. I incorporate different cuisines when creating menus and try to set delicious trends in aged care meals. I am very proud that we deliver great food, which is healthy and made with quality ingredients.”


What advice would you give to others in hospitality, who may or may not consider working in Aged Care?

“Before working in aged care, I was very anxious as I was not sure what to expect. I worried that my ability to create various dishes would be put on hold and I would be stuck in a routine. After joining SwanCare, I realised that aged care is like any other hospitality industry. In fact, it is even more special as we deliver food to our residents in their home. At the end of the day, it comes down to the skill and passion of the chef and how we use our opportunity. If you’re considering working in aged care, treat your residents as you would any other customers and provide them with quality food. If you do this, it will be a very satisfying role.”


Marie Dadson (Food Service Attendant)

What do you enjoy most about your role?

“The best thing is being with the residents and ensuring they are happy with their meals. I work with residents to help them change their meal if they’d prefer a different option. They know I want them to be happy with their meals.”


What have you learned during your time at SwanCare?

“It takes a lot of people to look after our residents! From meals, laundry and carers, to nurses and everyone behind the scenes. There are opportunities in Aged Care that people may not be aware of.”


Sue (Shuhao) Yang  (Physiotherapist Assistant)  

Can you please share a memory from your time at SwanCare?

“My favourite memory at SwanCare is the day I signed the contract as a physiotherapy assistant. After five years as a carer, my current goal is to keep studying and gain more skills. I’ll soon have the opportunity to apply for a different role once I complete my certificate. At SwanCare, you should be always ready for a new opportunity and challenge because SwanCare will give you the stage.”

 Could you please describe how it feels to work at SwanCare?

“Like many immigrants, I’ve had a bit of a language barrier. Because of this, sometimes I felt nervous and didn’t have much confidence. But at SwanCare, I’ve received so much support over the last seven years from my manager, supervisors and colleagues.”

Jovy Tesani (Manager Care Services Kingia and Tandara Care Facility)

What are the essential qualities of a leader?

“Being a manager does not automatically mean you are a good leader. In my view, a good leader is someone who leads by example and is a good listener. They give staff the opportunity to grow. Learning from your own mistakes is another important quality of being a good leader. It’s someone who treats everyone with respect regardless of who that person is, and who is always willing to lend a helping hand.”

What advice would you give to others looking to pursue leadership in an aged care environment?

“Not everyone is given the chance to work in an aged care environment. Being of service to vulnerable adults is a privilege. You must be equipped with sufficient knowledge, relevant skills, useful tools and virtues before setting your foot on board to become a leader in aged care. You must be ready to accept challenges, treat all stakeholders with dignity and respect, and assist and support your employees. In doing so, everyone will follow your lead.”

Are you a student, parent, graduate, job seeker or a professional searching for a meaningful career change? Come down to SkillsWest Careers Expo this weekend and come and say ‘Hi’ to Isabella and Priska from the People and Culture team. Chat to us about careers in aged care and ask us about the career opportunities with the opening of our new Ningana facility.

Perth SkillsWest Careers Expo – SwanCare Booth

Presented by: Isabella and Priska from the People and Culture Team, SwanCare

When:  Fri 9-3, Sat 10-4 & Sun 10-4

To submit an expression of interest form, click here.

For more information on SkillsWest expo, click here

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