Jemalong Residential Village has welcomed Mary Bromley and Desire Barroga to the roles of Residential Aged Care Manager and Deputy Residential Aged Care Manager.
Before emigrating to Australia from the Philippines in 1999, Mary was a qualified Chemical Engineer. However, arriving in Australia, Mary said she found it difficult to pick up work in her previous industry.
She started as PCA (Personal Care Assistant) trainee in a Greek nursing home in Melbourne while studying Bachelor of Nursing at La Trobe University, Victoria.
"That's why I know all the bad and the good short cuts and I understand the bottom of the ladder. Which I find it useful in people and behavior managing," Mary said.
It is then that she found her passion in aged care.
"I don't know but I just love aged care, it's never boring, our residents have better sense of humor than us who still have to maintain our inhibitions and protocols and they are always there unless it's the 'imminent'".
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Upon graduation, Mary completed a graduate nurse program while maintaining RN supervisory shifts in a Greek specific aged care home. She also continued working at several hospitals as casual to increase her experiences in acute and subacute.
Mary also continued learning from different hospitals' ward units in ICU, Medical, Respiratory- High Dependency, Neuro-Science and Palliative Care, because she believes that the care needs of the patients from these areas are common in the aged care settings.
Over 17 years in health care, Mary gained continuous trainings, work experiences and networking within quality compliance and management in aged care as her work expanded from Victoria, New South Wales to Queensland.
She completed Post Graduate Certificate in Dementia and Certificate IV in Training and Assessments.
However, Mary said she thought it is not enough to have the nursing degree and continuous work training in managerial positions she held, so she completed her Master in Business Administration in Gold Coast, QLD as advantage for her managerial positions.
Mary loves exploring and travels to different countries, cultures, exotic places and the rich histories of Royal empires and dynasties of Europe, Asia, North Africa and the pyramids in Egypt, Mexico, and South America.
Mary said she also went for Ivy League school tour in USA because it was her dream to enter Brown or Harvard University.
She heard that Harvard Business School provides Leveraging Executive Female Talent Forum through Criterion Conferences, which she completed in 2018 online to her last job that incorporated executive role in NSW.
Mary said she thought she will move out of NSW for a sea change but got caught with the COVID-19 government prolong lockdowns from June to October 2021.
Unable to get out of New South Wales, Mary's love for adventures and challenges continues to Central West as she came on board for the first time with Catholic Health Care to be the Residential Manager of Jemalong Residential Village.
When looking for a deputy, Mary heard of Desire as she was friends with Desire's sister.
Desire said before accepting the role she asked around about Mary if they would match with goals and skill set because she likes to work with somebody who is aligned to her engraved Filipino -Catholic values and principles, which are also the values of Catholic Health Care.
"We Filipinos are compassionate, inclusive, and very hospitable people. You will find that when you go to the Philippines, we will offer our food, drinks, and the best room of the house to our guests in our homes," Desire said.
"And during fiestas, the whole town people will open their doors to everyone for free food and drinks, including the well-known Karaoke singing entertainment that every Filipinos have in their homes."
Prior to coming to Australia from the Philippines, Desire had explored working in Italy as home care specialized nurse to an elderly.
Desire said she had loved her experience of the romantic atmosphere and country sides of Florence and Tuscany.
Desire's formative nursing years in the Philippines included working as school nurse, community education focused on reproductive health and pediatrics.
She has also worked in the emergency department of different hospitals and has tried her hand in teaching nursing.
"My original plan was to stay in Uni and teach however someone influenced me to study further and try Australia."
Desire completed her nursing bridging program in a Sydney Hospital. With that exposure, she decided to concentrate in aged care so she went back to Melbourne because she heard that Melbourne is the forefront in aged care among all states of Australia.
"What I like most in aged care is of course the consistency, having the same residents, the same families and understanding their aging process."
Along with more than 15 years of experience as a registered nurse, Desire holds a Diploma in Leadership and Management.
Her community involvement in Melbourne expanded from various aged care management positions to Victorian Covid Response Team of Department of Health.
In taking on this role, Mary said they will consider it as continuous growth to her life and work experiences as every facility is unique with their own character, with residents and their families having unique needs along with the staff culture and the organization itself.
Mary and Desire as a team will continue to work with the CHL standardized operational practices of Jemalong Residential Village, to improve and put into its best clinical care practice upon implementation of all the existing policy and procedures.
They said they aim to do this with the assistance of the different doctors in Forbes, allied health professionals and any organizations offering care assistance which they can tap into and together with the staff of Jemalong.
"With the umbrella of support from Catholic Health Care Organization we hope we will all have a cheerful home at Jemalong Retirement Village."
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