We are committed to making sure our services are inclusive of all older people, particularly older people who are marginalised and those who face barriers to accessing aged care services. We are committed to implementing the Department of Health’s Aged Care Diversity Framework and learning from diverse communities about respect for older people and about how we can make our services more inclusive. To help achieve these goals we partnered with Dr Catherine Barrett, Director of Celebrate Ageing, in 2020 on a project called Kitchen Table.
Kitchen Table is a series of portraits and stories about respect for older people in culturally diverse families. The Portraits of families at their Kitchen Table are shared alongside stories about what respect for older people means in each family and culture. The stories provide heart-warming opportunities to learn from each other. They also show how respect for older people is a cultural value and that we can challenge ageist values that lead to Elder Abuse in families and services.
The Kitchen Table is a powerful canvas for exploring respect for older people. The Kitchen Table is at the heart of many families. It provides a gathering place where hungry mouths are fed, hearts are nurtured, relationships are built and meaning is made. It is also where many of us first met an older person and learn about their value in our lives and the world. Every family has its own kitchen table culture which influences the way the table is set, the food it carries, the people who sit at it, and the conversations that teach generations about what is acceptable and what is not.
Respecting older people especially our parents have been always been part of our Vietnamese tradition over many generations. Our parents have endured a lot of hardship and sacrifice for us to be who we are today.
In our culture we serve the older people first, because we have respect for them. It’s a courtesy. This photo is of me and my daughter and granddaughter. I’m 75 and they call me Lola Fe which means grandmother.