Familiar foods bring comfort in aged care

Tuesday, 31 January, 2017

Jonathan Gavshon works as a general manager at Group Homes Australia, a new business model providing aged care and dementia care in a group home environment. As well as his passion for aged and dementia care in Australia, Jonathan also has a love for cooking, and he merges the two by teaching Group Homes Australia carers how to cook traditional ‘Aussie’ food for older Australians.

The carers at Group Homes Australia (known as homemakers) come from different nationalities and cultural backgrounds. Jonathan wanted to teach them some traditional Australian recipes that he knew the residents would love, including soups, roast chicken, vegetables, fish, side dishes, salads and desserts.

“I deliberately chose foods that were soft, easy to swallow but still could be plated in a very appetising way. Food becomes a very important part of an older person’s routine and so making tasty, varied meals is something that can create a lot of enjoyment and pleasure. I always try and make traditional meals, because they are used to those foods. The modern foods they might enjoy once in a while, but the traditional foods give them a sense of comfort!” said Gavshon, who believes that getting involved, showing you care and are committed to doing any and all jobs is critical, particularly in a start-up business.

“I remember on my first day, my role ranged from talking about the cash-flow projections to polishing a light fitting! Both were equally important for different reasons. I think remaining nimble and flexible is an important part of having a team that can adjust and grow as the business and external environment changes — it always does!”

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