Fronditha Care’s Khoryom ‘Tut’ Nyoun will donate his $10,000 prize money from the HESTA Aged Care awards to help his South Sudanese community pay for schooling to enter the aged care industry.
The South Sudanese personal care worker was recognised for his unique and kind approach to caring for the elderly Greek residents of the Templestowe STORGI nursing home.
In Adelaide for the national award ceremony, Tut was beaming with happiness and said the acknowledgement was “very special”.
“A lot of my community have called me and are so happy about the award,” he said. “They say this is a teachable moment, and hopefully I can inspire South Sudanese youth to follow in my footsteps.”
Tut has been a positive success story for his community – a stark contrast to the narrative that has been painted in the media about the South Sudanese.
Already an active participant in the Melbourne South Sudanese community and having lived as a refugee for many years, Tut said it was an easy choice to donate his prize money to his fellow community members.
“A lot of those that are struggling have told me they want to do what I do, but can’t afford to get the certificates or diplomas,” he said. “So these funds will be life changing for them.”
He said he will also like to take his team at Fronditha Care Templestowe out for a nice dinner to pass on his thanks.
Tut started his aged care placement at Fronditha Care six years ago and decided to stay on after creating a great rapport with the Greek residents and his colleagues. He has learnt some Greek to better communicate with the residents and has helped ease the anxiety and isolation that many often experience entering residential care.
Tut was also named Victorian Employee of the Year at the Aged & Community Services Australia Awards 2019 and received Fronditha Care’s own Outstanding Contribution of the Year Award in 2018, nominated by the families of those he cares for.