Age-old secret to residing at home

HOME SWEET HOME: People like Laureen laud Mercy Services Home and Community Care packages.
HOME SWEET HOME: People like Laureen laud Mercy Services Home and Community Care packages.

When Laureen and her late husband bought their Newcastle home 50 years ago, it cost them $20,000. “And that was fully furnished” says Laureen, who recently returned home from a few weeks in respite care after a fall — every independent older person’s worst nightmare.  

For so many people in our community like Laureen, the desire to stay in their own home for as long as humanly possible is terribly strong. How many times have you heard the saying “They’ll be carrying me out in a box!”?

“I’ve been used to being the one mowing the lawns and doing everything,” says Laureen. “I can’t believe it happened to me but Mercy was there. They’re absolutely beautiful and their whole concern about it is wonderful.”

The beauty of Mercy Services Home and Community Care packages is they’re subsidised by the government. So for most older people it really is an incredibly cheap way to support independent living in their own home. Care packages are tailored to as little or as much help as an older person needs and wants as circumstances change. The secret’s out!

“I cannot believe what they will do for you for not much money,” marvels Laureen, who’s been using the service for about seven years in various forms. “Once a fortnight I get the lawns mowed with the same package and I get the weeding done too if I need”. Transport to and from appointments is another common feature of Mercy’s care packages. Meals can be organised too, which Laureen says she doesn’t need at this stage but she will add that when the time comes.

Mercy Services certainly gets a big wrap from Laureen.

“They are keeping you in your own home and that’s what we all want as long as we can. The girls that visit me are so lovely. I can’t speak enough about them, they’re wonderful.”