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Caring community is Joan’s key to happiness

Joan thriving at Inverpine Retirement Village

It was Bolton Clarke’s veteran heritage that first drew Joan McAloney to Inverpine Retirement Village.

After losing her husband in the Vietnam War, she wanted to be part of a community that honoured that history.

“I was living near Ferny Grove and a friend of mine said ‘Joan, I think you need to move into a smaller place’. She brought me here and I am so pleased - I love it here,” she says.

Five years later, Joan is well and truly part of the fabric of the Inverpine community. She spends her days volunteering at the co-located residential aged care and says that wherever she has lived over the years, volunteering and community-mindedness has always been important to her.

“My husband was in the Army, so our family moved to a new place every two years,” she says.

“I have a background in nursing and primary teaching, so wherever we went I would offer to lend a hand however I could. This helped you truly feel like you belonged!”

For Joan, retirement is not a time to slow down. She enjoys packing her days with things that ‘fill her love tank’. On any given day she can be found volunteering, helping her friends and neighbours or hosting a birthday dinner for someone in the Village.

“It feels like a family and community -  the real, sincere caring is just so good, it makes a big difference,” she says.

“The people here are all interested in getting out and about and meeting people. They’re always happy to invite you in. It’s just such a great place to be, I love the atmosphere!”

The family feeling extends past the Retirement Village and into the Residential Aged Care where many of Joan’s friends and neighbours are now residents. She spends her days, chatting, playing cards, reading and helping however she can.

“Staying involved in the community is so important to keep you connected to people, and keep you feeling positive.”

Joan was recently nominated for a Queensland Volunteer Award to recognise her hard work.