Mandurah: Mercy Place residents gear up for a themed Australia Day

Mercy Place Mandurah staff Helene Friend and Lynette Scaddan with resident Ken Butcher. Picture: Jon Hewson www.communitypix.com.au   d490146
Mercy Place Mandurah staff Helene Friend and Lynette Scaddan with resident Ken Butcher. Picture: Jon Hewson www.communitypix.com.au d490146

THE spirit of Australia Day is alive and well at Mercy Place Mandurah with the aged care home’s residents taking part in a variety of themed events leading up to the national day.

From Australian poetry readings to creative arts conveying “what Australia means to us,” seniors at the not-for-profit home are celebrating Australia Day all week long.

The celebration will culminate in an Australian-themed barbecue on Australia Day with residents set to get dressed up in “down under” themed gear.

Among them will be 86-year old Ken Butcher, who was born in Bunbury on May 6, 1932 and has travelled extensively throughout “the lucky country” with his wife Eva Kate.

“I’m Australian born and bred and very proud to be just that,’’ Mr Butcher said.

He is the youngest of 13 children, a father of six, grandfather of 15 and great grandfather of 15.

“Australians are so friendly and I’ve had so much opportunity during my life in this country,” he said.

“I’ve been overseas twice, once to Mauritius and once to England and although I loved the UK, I would hate to live there.

“No matter where you come from, if you live in Australia you are Australian and that’s what I think makes our country so special.”

Mercy Place Mandurah service manager Christina Venables, who was born in Zimbabwe, said Mercy Health had a rich cultural diversity among its Mandurah team with many staff members as well as residents having moved to Australia from overseas.