Ann Power – The Epitome of a Servant Heart
By 1993 Anne Power had been married to Neil for 9 years and they were blessed to share four beautiful children. Well organised at home, with energy to burn and with the support of Neil, Ann was ready to re-enter the workforce. An advertisement for a position at Maroba Lodge sparked her interest. This position would allow her to meet her family responsibilities and fulfil her desire to serve the frail, and people who would benefit from supportive and loving care. Unsurprisingly, Ann was successful at interview and commenced work at Maroba Lodge on August 24, 1993, serving the evening meal seven days a fortnight to the Lodge’s first residents. This was the perfect match for Ann, and today she recalls many of those residents with great affection. These folk became extended family to Ann, and it became a real privilege to share her young family with them. Her children would make chocolates for them at Christmas and soon found they were ‘adopted’ by some residents, particularly those who didn’t have their own grandchildren.
I couldn’t help but ask Ann what were some of the most significant changes that she had noticed in her 28 years at Maroba. Without hesitation, she commented that people coming into the Lodge now, are increasingly frail, whereas in the beginning, residents were much more independent with many still driving their own cars and enjoying a social life external to Maroba – more like the self-care residents of today. Of course, this change has resulted in a major shift in staffing requirements and the work expected of them.
Ann and the Maroba Lodge commenced serving the Maroba community on the very same day, and now 28 years later, she still receives many positive comments about the design and quality of that building. Interestingly, it is only now that Maroba has embarked on a major refurbishment of the Lodge in order to maintain its attractive, contemporary and cutting-edge style. Ann wonders if Viv might be looking to refurbish her as well!
So how does that young wife and mother who commenced at Maroba 28 years ago, come to hold the influential leadership position of Customer Experience Partner today? Ann gives the credit to senior leaders who have mentored her throughout her career. It’s with sadness, and yet gratitude, that Ann specifically recalls the influence of Jane Smith, who, while she was well, ran the Maroba kitchen. As Jane’s illness progressed, she taught Ann many aspects of her role such as rostering and ordering, and fortunately for all, Ann was a fast learner.
Always keen to learn more Ann has taken every opportunity to participate in many of Maroba’s committees, thus availing herself of the firsthand opportunity to provide her with a more holistic understanding of how Maroba operates. She has never been one to simply talk the walk, but strives every day to walk the talk, leading by example, seeking for every opportunity to bring, joy happiness and quality to each resident’s life. It was Ann who was pivotal to the introduction of the Dining Experience, it is Ann who supports and encourages Maroba’s volunteers, and it is Ann who is always serving the community at BBQ’S and celebratory functions. Ann Power is consistently prepared to roll up her sleeves and get her hands dirty if it will help others.
Ann has been wise in developing a healthy work life balance and now in her current role she too is a mentor to others. Ann will tell you that she is blessed to have her ‘dream job’. ‘I love my job’, she says ‘and it’s the residents who keep me turning up each day’.
Family remains of primary importance to Ann. She is now a proud grandmother to eight, but it doesn’t stop there, ‘Maroba is my family too’ she says. This includes the residents, their families and of course her colleagues. If family then, is a sign of one’s wealth, Ann Power is very rich indeed!
By Helen MacDonald