Above: Peter Morgan-Jones, new executive chef and ‘food ambassador’ at HammondCare.
By Stephen Easton
The challenge for the impeccably qualified chef will be to adapt his fine dining experience to provide succulent meals within the limits set by Australia’s aged care regulations.
Sydney provider HammondCare announced Mr Morgan-Jones’ appointment as executive chef and ‘food ambassador’ yesterday, part of chief executive Dr Stephen Judd’s quest to offer the best food possible and hopefully inspire other aged care organisations.
Dr Judd said the commitment to food service excellence was taken to a new level by the encouragement of celebrity chef Maggie Beer, who gave a keynote presentation at last year’s HammondCare conference.
“Maggie has said that she’d rather die than eat the food offered in some aged care facilities, but was glad there were exceptions,” Dr Judd said. “We have been determined to be one of those exceptions and Peter’s appointment is another step in that process.”
Mr Morgan-Jones said his cooking was based on a love of “unadulterated” food where “the flavours do the talking”, and fresh, seasonal and sustainable produce.
“I’ve worked in restaurants and hotels and have been able to share the joy of a pleasurable meal but what sold me on this new role is the care factor,” he said.
“To be able to use my food knowledge and love of cooking to improve the quality of life of older people is an amazing opportunity. It will be great to be able to give something back.
“I’m looking forward to working with HammondCare to implement change in the food philosophy of aged care. I’m hoping my work here will be a catalyst for change across the sector.”
Meanwhile, in Frontier territory
Frontier Services, the largest provider of aged and community care in remote Australia, has also announced a new appointment this week.
Phil Burgess will take the reins as business manager for the Northern Territory, which means he will “play an important role in supporting the strategic operations of Frontier Services’ remote aged and community care services”, according to a statement.
Above: Phil Burgess, new Northern Territory business manager for Frontier Services.
Mr Burgess said he looked forward to the challenges of living and working in the Territory and was thrilled to join the one-of-a-kind provider.
“Frontier Services is a unique organisation,” Mr Burgess said. “We take on the services and challenges that nobody else wants to take on. My role will be to serve the Frontier Services team who are working so hard on the frontline, to equip them to do their jobs in the most effective and efficient ways.”
Mr Burgess acknowledged that providing aged and community care in remote areas brought with it a whole range of challenges that did not exist for operators in the city.
“When you look at what we do – the reality is that it is uneconomical. Therefore, it is a matter of working as effectively as we can with the scant resources that we have.”
“In many ways it is an enormous challenge, but it is also an opportunity to deliver aged and community care in a way that is flexible and culturally appropriate to the people we serve.”
Mr Burgess moved from Brisbane to Alice Springs for the role, and has a background in business consulting with firms like Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton. He also brings with him experience as a business manager in community services, including with the Indigenous cross cultural training organisation Why Warriors and almost three years on the Board of Queensland Baptist Care.
At the same time, Frontier Services has farewelled long-serving manager of residential care Rosemary Jeffery, who was responsible for the management of Frontier Services’ 12 residential aged care services in Darwin, Alice Springs, Katherine and Tennant Creek in the NT, as well as Derby and Wyndham in Western Australia.
Ms Jeffery will still be involved with the development of Frontier Services staff in her new position with Dovaston Training and Assessment Centre, according to Frontier Services’ regional manager Sharon Davis.
“Rosemary’s contribution over the past 14 years has been remarkable,” Ms Davis said.