FRIENDS: Jim Neuendorf, Nelson Dimond and Colin Marquardt enjoy each other's company at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy.
FRIENDS: Jim Neuendorf, Nelson Dimond and Colin Marquardt enjoy each other's company at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy. Jessica McGrath

'Friendship both ways': How carers empower the elderly

FRIENDSHIP with aged care volunteers and carers is highly valued by elderly residents.

This is according to Orana Aged Care resident Colin Marquardt during National Carers Week.

"They are all friends now, we all work well together," he said.

The 88-year-old resident was grateful he could still live independently in a unit when he moved to Orana early last year.

"I'm very happy here, I've settled down and I'm making a new life after my wife passed on," Mr Marquardt said.

He is thankful for carers like Margot Ludke who ensure residents have everything they need.

"I needed a new bed and they were able to purchase that through the government," Mr Marquardt said.

 

 

Colin Marquardt plays pool with Pastor Michael Braunberger at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy.
Colin Marquardt plays pool with Pastor Michael Braunberger at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy. Jessica McGrath

Mr Marquardt said he appreciated the love and dedication carers have after his late wife Debbie spent 14 full-time months in a nursing home.

He encouraged families to be understanding of the hard work carers do.

"A lot of people have worse situations, so be patient and helpful where you can," Mr Marquardt said.

"Be understanding and show love."

Fellow resident Jim Neuendorf also enjoys the friendships created over learning how to play pool.

"They're helpful and friendly," he said.

 

Ruby Ward, Christeen Burchard, Kathleen Polstich at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy.
Ruby Ward, Christeen Burchard, Kathleen Polstich at Orana Aged Care in Kingaroy. Jessica McGrath

Mr Neuendorf still lives independently at Orana by doing his own cooking and washing, but enjoys the community and activities carers organise.

"There's something different everyday, I try and join in as it's a lot of fun," he said.

It is not only the residents who treasure the friendships created.

Volunteer carer Nelson Dimond has been helping out at Orana for the past 22 years.

"I love how the friendships are both ways," he said.

"I take the time out to play pool with residents and visit people."

National Carers Week recognises and celebrates the dedication Australia's 2.7 million carers make to the nation, from October 13 to 19.