Raymond, Pappy live it up

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Raymond Walker with his beloved dog, Pappy.

It was only year ago that Raymond Walker decided he could not face another freezing winter in his drafty old house.

His decision to leave was made easier when he found Uniting AgeWell’s Kalkee Independent Living Units would also accept his beloved dog.

Sitting in the lounge room of his home on a sunny day, with ‘Pappy’ on his lap, Raymond says he has never looked back.

“I knew I couldn’t handle another freezing winter there. It’s been the best move. I love it here,” Raymond says.

“They’ve made me feel so welcome.”

While he enjoys a quiet life, Raymond still has a lot of people who come to visit and he’s free to do as he pleases.

“I’ve got fantastic neighbours and I join in for meals twice a week at the communal dining room,” Raymond says.

His one bedroom unit has a front garden, rear courtyard and a generous combined kitchen, dining and living room.

Part of the Uniting Church in Australia, Uniting AgeWell provides a raft of services for older Australians including respite and carer support, in home care, social support, independent retirement living, allied health and therapy services, and residential care.

Uniting AgeWell’s two residential care communities in Geelong provide outstanding care and support in a warm and welcoming environment.

Independent living unit coordinator Vanessa Dukovic says the focus is on providing a caring and welcoming community for seniors where they can remain independent but with peace of mind.

The Kalkee independent living units have a central dining room where residents gather to eat lunch and dinner cooked fresh daily by the chefs.

It has a sitting area with a large TV connected to Foxtel and milk, tea, and coffee, with fruit and breakfast food provided on request.

Stylish communal areas include comfortable lounge rooms and peaceful sensory gardens.

Supported housing is close by, with shared spaces and gorgeous, maintained gardens.

“Moving out of the family home and into retirement living shouldn’t be a time of sadness or anxiety,” says Vanessa.

“We want our residents to feel comfortable and able to continue doing the things that have always been important to them.

“No matter their age, people want choice and independence. They also need to feel valued, respected and have easy access to the services they need to live the life they want.”

The Kalkee community is in Belmont. Phone 5243 9566 for more information.

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