Uniting AgeWell’s report to Synod reflected an organisation feeling proud and confident of its expression of the church’s ministry, so much so that the symbolic UCA dove was flying into view.
The animated dove was part of a PowerPoint presentation made by Uniting AgeWell CEO Andrew Kinnersly, who addressed Synod 2017 after lunch on Monday.
“We are proudly an expression of the Uniting Church,” Mr Kinnersly said.
This was a theme that was also stressed by Uniting AgeWell board chairperson Rev Allan Thompson.
“Our work is infused with the Christian faith tradition,” he said.
Mr Thompson, who is preparing to retire from the board, said many Uniting Church people were involved with the agency in various capacities, including as volunteers and there were chaplains at all the accommodation facilities.
Synod members were given a copy of a recently adopted identity statement that set out the character and aims of Uniting AgeWell’s mission to “honour the unique spirit of love life and aliveness of every person”.
Mr Kinnersly said Uniting AgeWell wanted to “be in partnership with seniors to empower them”.
He outlined an impressive financial year of results with 90 per cent growth in community services such as home care packages and a projected operating surplus of over $13 million.
As a non-profit, all that surplus would be reinvested in the agency.
There have been recent major infrastructure investments win Camberwell, Kew and Manor Lakes.
Work was also underway to redevelop sites at Hawthorn and Preston.
Other notable achievements included a customer service hub at a shopping centre in Tasmania and a Leading Age Services Award Excellence in Care Award for being inclusive of LGBTI people.
“We believe we are in a strong position to face the challenges ahead,” Mr Kinnersly said.