With roots in regional New South Wales, and fond memories of spending school holidays on the farm with his Nan and Pop, the quiet country life is cemented in Nick Harris’s heart.
After leaving school and working in several jobs that weren’t the right fit for him, Nick’s natural affinity with the older generation led him to commencing a career caring for seniors at the age of 19.
Eight years on, Nick is a Lifestyle Carer at Carinity Home Care in Ipswich, and part of a team that provides seniors with the support they need to remain living at home.
“I enjoy what the hands-on role delivers in terms of direct connection with people, and I find it so fulfilling,” Nick said.
With similar upbringings, hobbies and interests to his clients, Nick finds himself completely at home supporting seniors living in the Ipswich area who, like him, were surrounded by the quiet country life ‘back in the day’.
“I enjoy being connected. You feel like you belong and have a real purpose. Every day I am filling a need by doing something for my clients that they can no longer do for themselves. Keeping them in their own home is so important to us both,” Nick said.
“They’re such interesting people, have so much to share, and are always happy to chat about their life experiences. And they’re a generation that are so appreciative and thankful.”
Nick and his client Trevor enjoy a unique connection. Trevor was diagnosed with early onset dementia aged 62, and his condition limits his ability to communicate verbally.
“We have a set and limited vocabulary we use between us, which allows us to understand each other, cementing our relationship and making our time together really enjoyable,” Nick said.
Nick and Trevor spend about nine hours each week together, time sharing a common interest: walking through the natural beauty of Queensland’s parks and gardens.
“Familiarity is important when supporting Trevor. It’s not just about revisiting his favourite parks. I also make an effort to remember which plants Trevor is interested in and make sure we walk by them each visit to see if they have new blossoms or flowers,” Nick said.
Reflecting on the last eight years working in aged care, Nick said: “I can’t think of a more fulfilling job you can have than assisting these people that need help.”
Carinity Home Care is seeking new carers to support Queensland seniors. For more information visit carinity.org.au/joinHC.
Nick Harris has formed a special bond with his Carinity Home Care Ipswich client, Trevor, through their shared love of bushwalking.