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Moving ‘home’ comes naturally for Vivienne

November 8, 2021

Vivienne Saunders is true to her life motto: life is full of ups and downs; treat everyone as you like to be treated and enjoy every day.

Over the past year, she has lost her son, her partner and younger sister. But she has also come ‘home’ to Berwick and Braeside Park.

Vivienne moved into an assisted living apartment in the village in August last year, after caring for her son for the past eight years.

“I had always lived locally to Berwick, and have had a connection with the village for many years,” Vivienne said.

As a former Meals on Wheels volunteer, she has visited different residents over the years.

“I had always thought I would love to live at Braeside Park and here I am.”

She is still fiercely independent but enjoys having her meals cooked for her.

“Apartment living really is a terrific option for people like myself who are quite capable of washing and cleaning but also need and want some support,” Vivienne said.

Vivienne worked for the City of Casey for over 20 years as a cook before running a coffee shop in Berwick. She has been involved with the canteen at the Berwick Cricket Club for 17 years and is about to start her 18th year.

When she is not busy outside the village, Vivienne is living a full life inside Braeside Park.

“It is wonderful to be able to water the gardens, plant flowers for other residents who may not be feeling up to it, and have the chance to socialise with wonderful people,” Vivienne said.

The love of her life, however, is following the mighty Bombers.

“I have been a fan for 65 years, and I could not believe it when my granddaughter told me she had a boyfriend – Darcy Parish, number 3,” Vivienne said.

“We go to almost every game, and I also follow my grandson who now plays for Beaconsfield.”

“It has been a tricky year, but next year is going to be a good one,” Vivienne said.

Leith Park is a wonderful place for single older women because of the community and the age-friendly accommodation. I don’t think I have ever felt as safe as I have here.

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