Kimberley is home for Deb
Posted on January 5, 2023
The saying ‘home is where the heart is’ rings true for Juniper Client Care Advisor Deb, who longed to move back to the Kimberley after briefly returning to Perth.
An experienced nurse who has worked across hospital and aged care settings in both metropolitan and regional locations, Deb joined Juniper two years ago as a nurse at Juniper Gerdewoonem Residential Aged Care Home in Kununurra.
“In nursing, there’s always a large component of you caring for elderly people,” Deb said.
“I really love older people, I have a passion for caring for them.”
Within a year, Deb transitioned into the role of Client Care Advisor, working with Home Care and Community clients at Juniper Kununurra Day Centre.
“I’ve learnt a lot in the role,” she said.
“No two days are the same and it’s a very rewarding job.
“It’s very different to the role that you do in Perth. Here in the Kimberley, the people are so humble and they are so appreciative of the help you can offer.
“It’s been a huge learning curve for me, but it’s exciting to know that we’re really making a difference in the Kununurra community.”
In early 2022, Deb made the snap decision to return to Perth to be closer to her elderly parents during WA’s peak community outbreak of COVID.
Upon moving back to the city, Deb soon realised how much she missed the Kimberley.
“I felt very displaced when I went back down to Perth – I really missed the Kimberly,” she said.
After getting reassurance from her parents that they were coping well in Perth, she returned north in October, where she was welcomed back with open arms.
“We already had Juniper’s Home Care and Community services in place for my parents in Perth so I knew they were being looked after,” she said.
“When I got back, people were so welcoming.
“There’s something so special about the Kimberley – the rock formations, the water ways, the people – it’s a very spiritual land, it touches your soul.
“I just love being here.”
Since returning to Kununurra, Deb, pictured above with client Anthony, has seen many positive changes take place in the community.
“We bring one of Juniper’s podiatrists, Clayton, up to the Kimberley every eight weeks,” she said.
“We’ve also found an occupational therapist who will be coming over from Queensland to carry out assessments.
“It’s really exciting that we can implement these services in the Kununurra community.
“We have a lot more clients now, and I know the support we provide is touching a lot of lives and making a real difference.”
But it’s not just the clients that make her job a rewarding one – it’s also the people she works with each day.
“Juniper is a really good organisation to work for, we have an amazing, supportive team who are always there when we need help,” she said.
“There’s also a lot of flexibility in the role and the opportunity to grow, so it’s a great place to work.
“I love this job because it’s different every day, and you get to work with allied health and community nurses to make a difference in our clients’ lives while helping them to stay in their community.”
Juniper Home Care are looking for kind and caring people to support older people in Wyndham and Kununurra. To learn more, give Team Leader Kirsti Brandis a call on 08 9169 4602.