LASA wishes to congratulate the SA/NT winners of the LASA Excellence in Age Services Awards 2020.

Now in its fourth year, the LASA Excellence in Age Services Awards aim to promote and recognise excellence across the diverse and dynamic fields of endeavour in the age services industry.

The awards celebrate the passion and achievements of organisations, teams and individuals in the service of older Australians, and seek to increase public confidence and community involvement in aged care and services.

“The awards remind us of the critical role played by aged care staff across Australia, and their tireless and heartfelt efforts to keep our loves ones safe, healthy and happy,” said LASA CEO Sean Rooney.

“It is an honour for us to provide a vehicle to highlight and celebrate their achievements, particularly during this challenging time of COVID-19. Congratulations to all the SA/NT award winners.”

The five categories are: Organisation Award, Team Award, Individual Award, Rising Star Award and the new Next Gen Young Leader Award.

Organisation Award – Helping Hand

Helping Hand has pioneered an innovative approach to building workforce capacity, by engaging students from a range of disciplines to work alongside clients and staff as both learners and contributors.

Students undertaking certificate, bachelor or PhD studies across vocational education, allied health, nursing, medicine, pharmacy, engineering or business are engaged to work alongside clients and staff as both learners and contributors.

The organisation supports over 500 students per year, which helps provide interprofessional understanding of the needs of older people and acts as a pathway for future employees.

Team Award – The Maintenance Team, The Willochra Home

The Maintenance Team at Willochra Home in the mid north of South Australia is honoured for theirr Sunshine Garden, a sensory garden in the Dementia Wing.

The garden design was based on research into how to provide the best dementia-friendly, restraint-free environment and what kinds of scented flowers and herbs to plant, along with real grass rather than synthetic.

Residents are often seen walking in bare feet on the lawn, smelling the flowers and herbs, and have demonstrated a greater level of response and calmness.

Individual Award – Keyur Anand, St. Anna’s Residential Care Facility

Nurse Practitioner in Aged Care Keyur Anand is developing a virtual reality palliative care education platform to help support staff and volunteers effectively communicate with clients and families around end-of-life matters, in a culturally sensitive way.

Working at St Anna’s Residential Care Facility of the Croatian, Ukrainian and Belarusian Aged Care Association of SA, Keyur is particularly interested in supporting cultural awareness and cultural values in palliative care.

Next Gen Young Leader Award – Tom Gray, Xtra AgedCare

Physiotherapist and Regional Lead Tom Gray from Xtra Aged Care goes above and beyond to provide high quality and compassionate care.

Tom has established wax bath therapy and a walking group, to improve individuals’ strength and mobility and improve wellbeing.

Tom personalises his treatments to incorporate people’s biopsychosocial needs and always takes time to stop and chat with clients, no matter his busy schedule.

SA/NT award winners were announced on Aged Care Employee Day on 7 August, with a live broadcast.

Aged Care Employee Day is a national campaign to acknowledge the role of aged care workers in the lives of our older people, by saying #ThanksforCaring.

Media contact: Nick Way 0419 835 449 nickw@lasa.asn.au