The Lifestyle team conducts monthly Resident/Relative meetings in the morning at around 10.30am. Most residents attend as well as a volunteer or staff who act as an interpreter to assist residents who have a poor command of the English language. The lifestyle program is discussed to ensure it reflects the needs, preferences and requests of residents. The plan is displayed in communal areas of the home and in residents’ rooms. The Leisure and Lifestyle team co-ordinates these activities and supports residents to enable them to participate in meaningful interactions with other residents and members of the broader community. The Site Manager chairs an evening Resident/Relative meeting three monthly at 7pm so relatives who work during the day can attend a meeting.

Individual activities include hand massage, manicure, reminiscing, book reading, 1.1 and other activities.

Staff escort residents who go out to luncheons or visit the Serbian Club or other venues of their choice. Lunches at the clubs provide positive interaction and stimulation for residents and assist in maintaining long term linkages with friends and their cultural community.

A selection of Serbian and other culturally appropriate books, CD’s, tapes and videos are available to the residents. A monthly book exchange program is in place operated by the local library.

DunaTV Serbian “Pink TV” channels and Serbian and Polish newspapers are provided to residents by Pennwood.

The effectiveness of lifestyle program is evaluated through each resident’s individual plan, through resident/relative surveys and through the audit program.


We employ staff from the Serbian and Polish cultures as most residents are from theses communities. This has assisted residents who have poor English language skills to make the needs, wishes and preferences for care and lifestyle known to staff. These staff have also been invaluable in assisting other members of the health care team to plan, co-ordinate and review resident care and services.

During the initial assessment the preferred language of residents and any assistance required to communicate has been ascertained. Dietary preferences in relation to cultural and religious requirements have also been identified and recorded on the residents’ nursing care plan. Recently residents and families have worked with staff to collect recipes for culturally specific meals and these are being incorporated into the menus.

Representatives from the two Serbian Orthodox Churches, the Polish Roman Catholic Church and the Uniting Church visit regularly to provide personal pastoral care, conduct in house services in our own chapel as well as supporting the residents to attend their own community churches and club activities.

Many or our culturally specific events and national days are celebrated with a culturally specific cooked lunch that is often prepared by volunteers to authentic recipes. Orthodox and Catholic Easter and Christmas is celebrated as well as other culturally specific events and national days with a spirit of co-operation by both communities eg. Slava Day – Serbian Orthodox celebration in November (see links to the Slava movie), Saint Stephen’s Day in September (Polish) and St Patrick’s Day 17th March.

Cultural practices relating to palliative care have also been identified and implemented, for example, a candle is lit for Serbian residents who are close to death.


Resident’s social and cultural history is documented through the baseline assessment on entry to Pennwood.

The Lifestyle team consult residents, their family and friends regarding the residents’ social and spiritual needs and this is conveyed to other staff via the nursing care plans and the lifestyle plans.

Prospective residents and their representatives are provided with a tour of the facility and consultations with management to answer any questions before they decide to live here.

A Registered Nurse has been employed specifically to provide support for the resident and their family on the first day. Polish and Serbian speaking staff are also available to help with the transition from the community to residential care. On the day of entry, residents are consulted about their needs and preferences for care during the completion of a baseline assessment. An interim care plan is developed initially to ensure staff have instructions for residents’ preferences and care requirements. Following further assessment during the next few weeks a comprehensive nursing care plan has been formulated for each resident. This outlines the care strategies that will meet the ongoing care , lifestyle and safety needs of the resident. All care and lifestyle plans have been reviewed regularly by registered nurses and the lifestyle team to ensure residents’ feel comfortable in their new home. Any changes to the residents’ needs are recorded on their care plans.


A past resident of Russian origin, Nina Pawlik donated poetry and landscapes of her birth place Pennwood Village in 2010. These masterpieces take pride of place in House 4 and in other areas of the facility.


Pennwood delivers intergenerational programs with the local Primary and Secondary schools and the New Arrivals program for the last 6 years.

Serbian children dancing groups attend and recite Serbian poetry and sing.

Career Path for Registered Nurses

Pennwood Village is in partnership with the Education Department for a new career path initiative to attract Serbian speaking registered nurses to aged care. We are currently part of an apprenticeship program which offers a career path from Year 11 through to university. The student incorporates Certificate 3 in Aged Care and is allocated points as a part of SACE study. This receives recognition of prior learning when they go to university.


Serbian residents follow the tennis and soccer and recent events have highlighted the Serbian prowess not just on the soccer ground but also as the world’s best tennis players. Lifestyle staff download photographs of their champions for residents’ rooms.

Annually the Eurovision song contest is always of interest to resident. A Serbian diva won in 2010 causing much celebration.

Pennwood is the home of AFL Port Adelaide “Port Power Magpies”, in teal and black and we have many supporters. Its always good fun and rivalry when an opposing “Crows”  supporters takes up residence with their yellow /blue and red colours.