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Keeping busy drives Isabel

May 4, 2021

Life has not always been easy for Isabel Pollock, but one thing is certain, keeping busy and independent makes all the difference.

Isabel, who has lived at Braeside Park in an assisted living apartment for the past four years, is a straight-talking woman. Over her 84 years, she has seen many changes in the world and has endured much change in her own.

Over twenty years ago family circumstances meant she had to leave her farm outside of Melbourne and move to the country and into an independent unit at OCAV’s Currie Park village.

“I didn’t want to leave everything and everyone I knew. But I made up my mind that to heal, I had to start again. And I did,” she said.

The healing included joining the Euroa Tennis Club, the local Uniting Church and becoming involved in the Currie Park community. Over 16 years, Isabel established strong friendships and an enviable support network.

Circumstances changed again, and Isabel moved to Berwick, and into her assisted living apartment.

Although she is not as active around Braeside Park as she was at Currie Park, she says the support she receives from OCAV staff and the village residents is second to none.

“Assisted living has taken some adjustment because it is a different way of life. It does not mean you lose your independence. Far from it. It just means you have extra help when you need it,” she said.

Being independent is important to Isabel, who continues to drive to visit nearby family and friends.

Isabel is looking forward to returning to the local Uniting Church where she was playing the organ before the COVID-19 lockdowns.

“Church and my faith have always been an important part of my life. My faith has helped me get on with my life and accept and work through change. The church has helped me connect with many people I would otherwise never have met, and I am looking forward to reconnecting,” Isabel said.

In the meantime, there is always a book to read, a jigsaw to do, or a drive to make.

“I may have slowed down but I am not stopping,” Isabel said.


Dorothy Clayton has felt very much ‘at home’ since she moved into Braeside Park nine years ago. Now, Dorothy, the village’s volunteer pastoral care worker, tries to ensure that others also feel a sense of belonging in the Berwick village.

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