31 January 2023

Staying independent through assisted living

Residents have access to a tiered range of tailored services.

My grandchildren say it’s like living on a cruise ship. You couldn’t wish for more.’ Resident ‘Jo’

With towering gums and the scenic Back Creek reserve attracting bird life, Jenny loves sitting on her balcony and looking out into the tree tops.
She’s only recently moved and especially loves the architecture of her brand new home, which is a second-floor apartment. As she enjoys her leafy views, it’s allowed her to reflect on the question all people face as they grow older: How am I going to be looked after?
“You’ve got to be realistic,” she says, which is why when she downsized she moved to Morgan Glen Iris.
Developed by BASScare, a not-for-profit organisation with over six decades’ experience with seniors’ living, Morgan Glen Iris offers residents a premium, assisted-living retirement community.
This means it provides a little more than a standard retirement village but is not residential aged care. Residents are supported to maintain their independence through a tiered range of tailored services, matched to individual needs, which can be adjusted over time.
For Jenny, aside from the aesthetic appeal of the site, she loved that “at this place you can get increasing levels of support”.
“It’s nice to know that if I want to decrease the amount of cooking I do for myself and increase the assistance I can move to that,” she says. At Morgan there is a restaurant on site which can provide meals to residents, who also have the option of cooking in their private, contemporary apartment kitchens.
“I have my apartment cleaned once a week, which is lovely,” Jenny says of the services she is currently enjoying. Although she still drives, Jenny says she knows that “one of the big wrenches will come” when she must relinquish her license, but she knows that blow will be softened by living at Morgan.
“You can ask if you can be driven to an eye appointment or any medical appointment and back,” she explains, adding that there are also plenty of social opportunities provided as well. ‘‘You can go on an excursion in the bus.

Morgan Glen Iris welcomed its first residents in 2021, and Jenny is one of many members of the friendly community enjoying their new lifestyle.
Fellow resident Jo says that no longer having to do things like change her bed and clean her apartment has freed her to enjoy the social side of life. “I can go and have breakfast, lunch, and dinners and the company … is very enjoyable,” she says.
Bernard and Kay are having a similar experience, not only enjoying the fact that they no longer have to think about planning menus and preparing dinners, but that they can also enjoy the restaurant with family.
“We invited all the adult members of the family down; they were amazed that everybody could order a separate dish,’’ Bernard says. ‘‘There was a great menu and we sat there and talked. It gave us a lot of comfort that the family were happy with our move.’’
The restaurant isn’t the only amenity that residents enjoy. There’s also a gold class-style cinema, a gym, a fully stocked library and a salon equipped for hair, beauty and massage treatments, plus a 24/7 on-site concierge. A registered nurse, direct support workers and visiting allied health services are all available as well.
“My grandchildren say it’s like living on a cruise ship,” Jo says.
“You couldn’t wish for more.”

People considering retirement community living should seek professional, independent financial and legal advice.


Sunday Age, January 29, 2023