Have you ever considered a career change later in life? After 25 years, Tony Wilson did and has never looked back.
For many people, the pressure of caring for a loved one as they battle a degenerative disease can be overwhelming. And for those caring for a parent with Alzheimer’s disease, the emotional impact of being an unfamiliar face in the eyes of your original carer can be an emotionally painful and stressful experience.
In spite of the emotional challenge, Tony Wilson spent the last year of his father’s life staying with his father four nights a week to feed, bath and administer medication, to ensure that his father had the essential care and companionship he required in the later stages of his Alzheimer’s diagnosis and to give his mother, the primary carer, a well deserved break.
Whilst he admits that juggling his full-time job and family with caring for his father was difficult, it inspired a passion for aged care that Tony wouldn’t have realised otherwise.
“I was still working full-time as a truck driver and excavator daily with my company…it was hard work juggling the two roles, but I loved it,” he said.
After 25 years, Tony gave up his career as a truck driver and excavator to become a full-time care worker with Just Better Care’s Hills to Hornsby office in New South Wales.
“I am now looking after and caring for people who have special needs and have found this to be the most satisfying and rewarding job I have ever had,” he said.
Tony’s selfless dedication to helping those in need hasn’t gone unnoticed, with Sue Buckle, Just Better Care Hills to Hornsby director, recognising his great work.
“He works from his heart and while he has only been with us for about seven months, he is already a wonderful asset to our team,” Ms Buckle said.
“He is genuine, has a bucket load of empathy and a wonderful, positive attitude.”
Tony has joined the 1,400 care workers working for Just Better Care across Australia, providing much needed in-home care and lifestyle support for a multitude of people including seniors, new mothers and those living with disability.
With projections from Alzheimer’s Australia suggesting that by 2025 some 255,800 carers will be needed in the community, it has never been more essential to recognise the important work those like Tony are achieving daily.