Respect Welcomes New Team Members through the PALM Initiative

St John's |

Respect welcomes new team members through PALM initiative

Respect is excited to welcome 11 new Personal Care Assistants from Fiji to the St John’s home in Wangaratta recently, as part of a unique, new initiative which promises to further enhance the organisation’s ability to provide exemplary care to its residents. 

Respect recently joined The Pacific Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme, which offers opportunities for people from 10 Pacific Island nations to work in Australia for up to four years in rural areas in industries experiencing shortages. 

Nick Adams, Respect’s Chief People Officer, says each of our new colleagues brings with them a unique set of skills and experiences, and their addition to our team will play a significant role in supporting the St John’s community, as well as current staff members.

“Each of our new team members has a Certificate III in Individual Support and experience caring for the elderly,” he says.  

“Their arrival is a testament to our commitment to fostering diversity and promoting inclusivity within our organisation. By embracing different cultures and backgrounds, we enrich our team’s collective knowledge and create a nurturing environment that benefits our residents and staff.” 

Margaret Winter, General Manager of St John’s, says that the home, as well as the broader community, has been united as one in their excitement to welcome the new team members with open arms.

“It’s a fantastic story and our team has enjoyed celebrating this initiative as it has come to fruition,” she says. “Preparing for their arrival was a bit of a challenge to get things ready in time, however the staff members at St John’s worked tirelessly to achieve this.

“Our current orientation program has been redeveloped to cover a number of different subjects due to cultural diversity and to ensure our mission and values are well presented in a way to meet cultural differences. This also included how the bus system works to enable our new team members to be independent and introducing them to various businesses and the local community. 

“The one main issue they are facing is the cold… when they left Fiji it was a nice 30 degrees and when they arrived in Wangaratta, it was 10. Just a bit of a difference!” 

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