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Marlene is Busier Than Ever in Residential Care


Born in Mildura in 1932, Marlene never imagined she would live in the Fleurieu, let alone move into Southern Cross Care’s Sandpiper Lodge Residential Care.

Marlene left school at the age of 15 and worked various jobs such as house cleaning.

She met her husband while living in the Victorian Otway Ranges on a fated trip to the movies with her future brother-in-law and his wife, who lived on the same road as Marlene.

Over the 46 years they were married before he passed away in 1999, the couple lived and worked in Penola and then the Mallee region.

“We never had a lot of money, we’ve always lived week to week but we’ve always had a happy life,” Marlene said.

As a family they often visited Loxton in the Riverland and had imagined retiring there, until one of their three grandchildren drew them to Victor Harbor.

Marlene now has two great grandchildren and her daughter also lives in the Fleurieu.

They talk every day on the phone and her son-in-law visits to take her to appointments.

While Marlene ventures out occasionally for a walk with support from the Sandpiper Lodge staff, she spends most of her time engaging in onsite activities.

She enjoys puzzles, Tai Chi, fitball drumming and all the musical performances and has now joined the knitting group.

“I hadn’t knitted in I don’t know how many years, more years than I care to remember, and so I’ve started knitting a bit now, nothing too big but it’s something to keep me occupied,” Marlene said.

“I think it’s up to us to go to the performances, because they’re good enough to come and I feel everyone should make a point of going.”

Activities and lifestyle offerings are key to Southern Cross Care’s Better for life vision, as they improve the physical, social and mental well-being of residents.

For more information on what Better for life means in Residential Care, click here.