While a pandemic has put most peoples’ travel plans on hold, for some, just getting away in their own state is no mean feat either.
Beverly man John Donovan, the sole carer of his wife Julie (pictured above), who lives with Multiple Sclerosis, has tended to Julie’s needs single-handedly for a number of years.
At 71 years of age, being a full time carer with no support, John has little time for himself. When a chance opportunity to take a road trip with his two brothers to Mount Augustus arose, John felt it was a good opportunity to take a well-earned break.
However, without any respite in the Wheatbelt, and all other respite homes he contacted in Perth fully booked, he had hit a stumbling block.
“Someone I knew told me to try Rocky Bay, so I got in touch, and it all happened pretty quickly” said John.
John contacted Rocky Bay’s Customer Engagement team to find out more about respite guest house options.
“When I spoke to John he told me he hadn’t had a break from looking after his wife for many years, and he didn’t really know if Rocky Bay could do anything to help,” said Rocky Bay Customer Engagement Officer, Jess Nieves.
Following a few phone calls, Rocky Bay team collaboration and determination, Julie’s stay became a reality that very afternoon in Rocky Bay’s first guest house north of the river.
“I contacted Parkland Retreat in Noranda and we had availability for the request of nine days and could accommodate Julie as soon as possible, which was fantastic,” said Jess.
Dealing with the challenges of creating an Individual Transfer Mobility Plan and providing Julie with the loan of a new wheelchair that better suited the guest house, Julie’s stay was finally made possible.
“John was so appreciative and thankful,” said Jess.
“This was a much needed mental health break after being the sole carer with no support for a long time…its moments like these that really make a difference and our jobs worth it.”
While John ventured further afield with his brothers visiting Mount Magnet and Carnarvon, Julie enjoyed a wonderful and relaxing stay at Noranda, heading out for much-anticipated day trips and a bit of shopping, coffee and cake!
“Julie was very happy with the staff, she really enjoyed her stay there,” said John.
A comfortable and stylish home located close to Whiteman Park, Parkland Retreat it seems, certainly lives up to its name.