Lynda Scifleet – 32 years working with Adventist Senior Living - Blog

Lynda Scifleet – 32 years working with Adventist Senior Living

FOR Cooranbong resident Lynda Scifleet, caring for people comes as naturally to her as breathing. It is just something she has always done. She has spent most of her working life in aged care, and will tick over 32 years at Adventist Senior Living in September.

Lynda was recently featured in the Newcastle Herald – click here to view the article

But Mrs Scifleet has been looking after others ever since she was 13 years old. Her father, acclaimed self-taught Newcastle artist Irvine Homer, suffered from osteo arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis – a rotting of the base of the spine. From the age of 13 I would get up in the night for him, Mrs Scifleet said.He’d yell out for me and I’d make him a cuppa. I was in the next room. I’d sit up for an hour with him and listen to the radio then go back to bed.

Mrs Scifleet left school at 15 to look after her father, and was his main carer until he moved into a nursing home. When he started getting his disease, he used to paint on the cupboards and fridges at home, she said. And then William Dobell got to hear about him, and he brought my dad some paints around and it went from there. When his fingers became really bad, I’d strap the brush onto his hands for him.

Mrs Scifleet now trains other home care staff. I believe that we should treat people the way we want to be treated, or how we would want our parents treated, she said. It means more to me than just a pay packet. Mrs Scifleet regularly goes above and beyond the call of duty. Many of her clients consider her a guardian angel.

Adventist Senior Living home care area manager Kate Gilmour said Mrs Scifleet would often keep clients company during her lunch break, stay back if something extra needed to be done, and would drop everything on a day off to help in an emergency. If I could clone her nature, the way she deals with our clients and her work ethic, I would do it in a flash, Ms Gilmour said.

Patience and compassion are vital personality traits for working in aged care, Mrs Scifleet said. She had sat with many people during their last moments. There was quite a number of people in the nursing home who had no one, or their family couldn’t come in through the night, and I thought they were heading off. So I’d go and sit with them for a few hours. It is just something I do, Mrs Scifleet said. She had learned a lot from listening to their stories. Give them time. Listen to them. They are trying to say something, she said. They are just people wanting to be loved.

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