Introducing Lukas Pipe, Care Service Employee of The Cairns Aged Care Centre.

How long have you worked in the aged care industry and with The Salvation Army Aged Care?

I first started working in a home care environment in 2016 (which I really enjoyed) when I was 18 with my dad. My dad was a major influence in why I began as a carer. The following year, I applied for the Care Service Employee role at The Salvation Army and have been working for almost three years.

What do you enjoy most about your role with The Salvation Army Aged Care?

What I enjoy most about my role is that I am able to build strong relationships with residents and families. From meeting a resident's wife, I found out that she wasn't able to take her dog for a walk anymore due to the dog's strength. In finding this out, I offered to take her beautiful dog for walks once or twice a week which I really enjoy.

In addition, I love hearing stories from the past and how it has shaped each person. Each resident has their own story to tell and if they want to tell it, I love to listen. I also appreciate and enjoying working with the staff and management as I do believe they honestly care and are supportive, although, at times it can be an extremely stressful job.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is waking up each morning knowing that I am helping people. Because I work in a dementia unit, it can get a little crazy for staff. But we do our best. However, it really means a lot when residents are excited to see me. There will be residents who will smile, wave or even give me a hug. I love to try and keep each resident as active and entertained as possible and watching them laugh or have fun as it really warms my heart. It can be lonely growing old, so letting them know that we care and are supportive is significant to me.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I like being with my family and loved ones. Family is especially important to me and I will always be there for them. Apart from family and friends, I love to be active. I will go to the gym, go for walks or hikes and go to the beach and garden. Honestly, I love to be outdoors.

What advice would you give other The Salvation Army Aged Care employees working in similar roles?

Advice that I would give other staff is just to remember that what we do is special and meaningful. Obviously our role as a carer can be difficult and frustrating, but it is an amazing feat to care and look after our residents with kindness and love.