Making sure no one misses out on Christmas!

While Christmas is a time of ‘joy to the world’ for many, it can also be a time when isolation seems more pronounced for those who are older, unwell, less mobile and in need of care and support.

But not if the team at HammondCare At Home South West Sydney can help it. They are pulling out all stops to ensure every one of their clients shares in the joy of Christmas.

Carolling for clients

While the traditional practice of choirs ‘carolling’ in the streets and shops is less common today, that hasn’t stopped the HammondCare team travelling to clients to sing Christmas carols in their home.

While care staff are busy with care delivery, managers, pastoral care coordinators and support staff are donning Christmas outfits and visiting clients to share Christmas cheer.

“It’s part of our Mission in Action to care for the whole person and many older people particularly love singing or listening to carols, and enjoying some Christmas festivities,” SWS Area Manager Annette Abblot said.

“We’ve been doing this for a number of years and we never cease to be delighted by the big smiles, the happy singing and the tears of joy we see on the faces of clients and family members.

“For some clients with dementia, who may not often verbalise, we see their faces light up when the carols start, and sometimes they join in singing which is a special moment for everyone.”

Divine decorations

Another way the HammondCare team share Christmas joy is through their now legendary Christmas display which takes office decorations to a whole new level.

As a way to brighten the Christmas season, the local community - including aged care residents and clients, families and fellow staff and volunteers - are invited to visit the spectacular decorations. Managers and HammondCare College stage dress festively for the occasion and refreshments are provided

“Christmas is a time for getting together and celebrating, and our team use their own time to turn our entire office into a Christmas wonderland so we can share it with our community,” Annette said.

Meals on Christmas Day

While many older people will be with their families and friends on Christmas Day, there are an increasing number who may be on their own for Christmas. HammondCare At Home makes special arrangements to ensure these clients receive a visit and have a Christmas meal available.

By coordinating with HammondCare’s residential care services also based at Hammondville, hot meals are ordered and delivered for free to clients who would otherwise miss out on a special Christmas lunch. And if they would like company, two meals will be provided and the care worker will stay to celebrate where possible.

“Obviously we try to ensure as many of our hard-working care staff can celebrate Christmas Day at home with their families, but we are all very mindful of those clients who may be on their own.

“It’s our goal to make sure no older person is on their own for Christmas Day and it is a credit to our care staff and managers that we can achieve this. But it’s really a privilege to be able to support our clients in this way.”

HammondCare At Home provides Home Care Packages and Commonwealth Home Support Services across Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane and many regional, rural and remote areas in various states. For more information call 1800 826 166.