Port Augusta Diversional Therapist reaches milestone

MILESTONE: Pauline Mannion, centre, is presented with a certificate by Nerrilda/Ramsay Auxiliary members Phyllis Robinson, Marg Wewzow, Vanessa Kirkham and Desley McKinlay.
MILESTONE: Pauline Mannion, centre, is presented with a certificate by Nerrilda/Ramsay Auxiliary members Phyllis Robinson, Marg Wewzow, Vanessa Kirkham and Desley McKinlay.

LONG-SERVING Diversional Therapist Pauline Mannion has dedicated more than half of her life to the Nerrilda Nursing Home, reaching 30 years of service at the start of the new year.

Pauline’s peers from the Nerrilda/Ramsay Auxiliary rewarded her contributions to the aged care facility by presenting her with a certificate of recognition.

After three decades and several changes in the industry, Pauline said she still ‘absolutely loves’ her job.

“It’s just lovely. The residents are really lovely, this type of work is just something that I've really gelled with,” she said.

“It’s a great job, it’s very rewarding.”

Pauline began her journey with Nerrilda as a volunteer, before being offered a full-time position.

Pauline’s role involves improving the residents’ quality of life through activities such as bus outings, poetry, sing-a-longs, church and prayer services, morning teas and craft.

She said that the purpose of these activities is to help residents with their physical, spiritual and social well-being.

“The most rewarding thing is when you see a smile on someone’s face, a tapping of the foot, or even when someone looks at you genuinely and says 'thank you so much, I couldn’t have done it without you’,” she said,

“It’s great seeing residents accomplish something they thought they perhaps would never do again. We want to see them still doing the things they would do at home.”

Pauline was recognised by the Auxiliary at a staff barbecue at Edenfield Family Care at the end of 2017, which was hosted by new owner Jesse Seelvarjah.

Auxiliary President Vanessa Kirkham praised Pauline for her long-standing service.

"As a previous member of the Auxiliary, we thought it was fitting that we celebrate and recognise Pauline's dedication and commitment to enhancing residents well-being and quality of life,” she said.

Describing her role as ‘hard, heavy work’, Pauline said she will inevitably – and reluctantly – retire in the next few years.

“It’s not something you could give up easily,” the 57-year-old said. 

“It’s long hours, but you do it because of the people and if they need something you’re not going to walk away from them, you’re going to stay and help them out.”

Pauline’s words of wisdom for people considering employment in the aged care department are to be compassionate and ready to learn.

“People don’t come up to you feeling amazingly better, but it’s about their actual happiness,” she said.

“If you want to see happiness in people, it’s a lovely place to work.”