Lyndoch Village Hub resident Gerry was born in Clunes, a gold mining town approximately 30km north of Ballarat. Raised alongside his three brothers, he played cricket, basketball and loved anything outdoors.
At 13 years old, his musical dad inspired him to give music a go. So Gerry did just that and went on to play in cabarets and pubs, anything from rock n’ roll, blues, and jazz. Music has always been there for Gerry – not just playing, but singing, dancing and listening. “If you play the base, you’ll never be out of work, and 50 years on, I’m still receiving calls to play at functions,” said Gerry.
Leaving school in year 11 to help support his family, he worked in retail. Receiving on the job training, by his mid 20’s he worked his way into management positions. Gerry was also community-minded and raised money for hospitals through his association with APEX. But it didn’t stop there!
After working for around 20 years, Gerry found out he had a serious heart condition and was rushed to The Alfred in Melbourne. The diagnosis was he would need a transplant. While receiving care in the hospital, the idea of writing a book bubbled away – as a bit of a joke. However, when news came eight months later that his heart condition had improved and he no longer needed the transplant, he wrote the book, typed it up and self-published it. All monies Gerry receives from the sales he donates back to The Alfred – to say thank you!
After reflecting on his quality of life and considering support options, Gerry thought the Lyndoch Village Hub was a good option. “I can go fishing on the river and have different care options on my doorstep, which works well for me. I love having a routine, rehearsing music, being involved in the activities and functions at Lyndoch. Plus, it’s a good opportunity to constantly meet new people. I love the day at the races, bus trips to Koroit and listening to people pass on their stories,” he said.
Gerry’s advice is to not take life for granted, respect everyone, always say please and thank you, and always listen. It’s the little things that make a difference. “If you’re not sure about your health, find out. Men are usually worse at seeking help than women, so don’t wait until the damage is done. They initially gave me 18 months, and now I make sure I find time for myself.”
If you’d like to read more about Gerry’s journey, check out his book: Active Mind: Failing Heart. My life and health debate.
“We are very grateful for the professionalism and care the staff have shown”
Family of Living@Home clients
“We would like to acknowledge the fantastic support shown to this lovely couple by the Living@Home team and the flexibility and understanding of their care needs”
Family Member of Living@Home client
“The lady you sent over yesterday was delightful, and even made Mum a hot lemon drink and put her to bed”
Leanne (daughter of Living@Home client)
“What a wonderful job Trish and Liz do, we are so happy with the care they provide”
Family Members of Living@Home clients
“I really appreciate the support from the Lyndoch Living@Home team, it’s a huge help in managing my caring role”
Michelle (Living@Home client)
“A very big thank you to the wonderful staff who came into our home and cared for my husband. This respite break made a very difficult situation more tolerable and gave me something to look forward to”
Christine (Living@Home client)
“Geraldine is the about the best cleaner I’ve ever had!”
Maurice (Living@Home client)
“Jan is such a capable, competent and calming carer, I feel so safe in her hands. I could not ask for anyone better”
Joan (Living@Home client)
“I’ve always been a busy, practical person and I’m still a busy person – I’m still able to be very involved in the community, especially the Speedway. I’m a busy bloke!”
“I get spoilt rotten here! I really get cared for.”
Stuart (Swinton East)
“One of the lovely nurses had a great idea and planted out a raised bed with tomatoes and other plants and I enjoy getting out there and doing some work in the garden, collecting the produce.” “The staff are very, very nice. They greet you with a smile and do things very well.“
“I really enjoy the school kids visiting, and I’m amazed at the quality of the kids,
they’re all so nice!”
John (Lake Lodge)
“I’ve lived here for 5 years and I’m very happy with the nurses and other staff”
Margaret (Lake Lodge)
“I’ve made friends here that I wouldn’t have been able to meet living by myself at home. It’s like an extension of your family” “The staff are absolutely fantastic here, nothing is ever a problem for them. Right through to the maintenance men, the cleaners and gardeners and staff at the kiosk, they’re all obliging and always greet you with a smile” “At Lyndoch I get comfort, care and conversation, add a bit of fresh air and that’s exactly what you need in life”
Lynette (Swinton East)