Keith wins VHA competition

Kurrajong Lodge orderly Keith Thistlewaite is very popular with his team mates and residents right now because he is shouting everyone morning tea.

Victoria Healthcare Association ran a statewide competition asking its members why they loved their job in aged care. Keith entered his 100-word answer and won first prize which was $500 to be used to treat the aged care team to a special morning tea.

Keith said he was inspired to enter the competition after Kurrajong Lodge nurse unit manager Reeta Chisti told him it would be nice if some team members took the time to do so.

“If you’re passionate about something it’s very easy to write about it,” Keith said.

“I love my job,” he said.

“You’d find it hard to work in a better place than Wimmera Health Care Group.

“I’ve been here eight years and there hasn’t been a single day when I’ve struggled with the idea of getting up and going to work.”

Keith said his career had previously been in steel fabrication at Horsham’s now defunct foundry.

“I was there for 22 years and considered it a good life and would never have given this industry a second thought,” he said.

“But if I could wind back the clock I would have dedicated a career to this place.

“I just love interacting with the residents each day and putting a smile on their faces.

“It’s an absolute privilege to be able to give something back to these people who have given so much themselves.”

Keith said working with an amazing and supportive team also made his job special.

PSRACS committee member Chloe Keogh travelled to Horsham to congratulate Keith but the timing was unfortunate because he had taken the day off to attend the Queen concert.

Instead Chloe caught up with Kurrajong Lodge NUM Reeta Chisti and Director of Residential Services Sarah Kleinitz. Sarah has given Keith free reins to decide exactly how big and lavish the morning tea will be.

Picture captions (FaceBook only): 1. Keith celebrates his win with Kurrajong Lodge team mates.

2. PSRACS committee member Chloe Keogh, left, congratulates Rheeta Chisti and Sarah Kleinitz on Keith’s win.

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