Duhig Village welcomes back Barbara with open arms

14 March 2023

Barbara Rawlins, an SCCQ resident, has returned to Duhig Village (Holland Park) after two years of living back at home.

Back in 2019, Barbara had come to visit an old neighbour at Duhig Village and was impressed with the quality of the home as well as the friendly environment. Her husband Stephen was living in a different Aged Care home at the time, but Barbara knew Duhig Village would be a great fit for Stephen.

Barbara put his name down on the waiting list and in early 2020, Duhig Village called to say they had a double room available. Although Barbara wasn’t originally planning on moving in to the home, a double room provided the opportunity for them both of them to live together again after 6 years, so Barbara and Stephen both moved in.

For the next 2 weeks, Barbara and Stephen were together again, enjoying each other’s company and being cared for by the caring staff at Duhig Village. Stephen then peacefully passed away on 1st of June 2020.

“It was a sad time, but Trish Milliner was an absolute angel. She consoled me, and she comforted me” said Barbara, speaking about one of the staff members at Duhig Village.

“All the staff were great to me and treated me like a princess. After Stephen died, I continued to join in on planned activities and get involved in everything where I could, but about 6 months later, I felt that I wasn’t quite ready to live in an aged care home for good.

“So, I wrote a letter to Mohammed (Residential Manager at Duhig Village) and told him I was ready to go back home. I said ‘can I ever come back’ and he said ‘yes, you can come back anytime you want to’. All the staff came to see me off and even gave me a little going away present.” Said Barbara.

After two years of living back in her Wishart home, Barbara decided she needed more care and felt it was time to return to Duhig Village in January 2023.

“When I came back here, the staff were really happy to see me and they all welcomed me back with open arms. Mohammed is a friendly and approachable manager who is genuinely caring for every resident and efficiently runs the home, so happiness resonates throughout Duhig Village. They are such kind and lovely staff here. I wouldn’t go to any other place. They make me feel at home here and that’s why I came back” Said Barbara.

“This is a lovely home. Here I can easily go to Mass in the chapel downstairs. I love the quizzes, and I do the exercises and dancing. I love to participate in anything. We also have a wonderful Lifestyle staff, Dean-na and Diana, and I think if they go to the effort of organising all these wonderful things for us, I’m going to participate.”

“We even went and saw Strictly Ballroom the other day in our movie theatre here. There are lovely comfortable chairs, and they give us a lovely crochet rug each and then we had ice cream with a spoon.”

Barbara has also made some good friends over the years with the residents at Duhig Village. Barbara often sits with Mary Dwyer for lunch, a fellow resident and friend who was very happy when Barbara came back. “One day we were talking and we discovered that we both got married on the exact same date in the same year. She was married in the morning in Brisbane, and I was married in the afternoon in Sydney. Isn’t that uncanny?” Said Barbara.