2018 HLAC Chef/Cook Award National Winner – Gerda Poalses

2018 HLAC Chef/Cook Award National Winner – Gerda Poalses

Cooking with love.

Food is truly a powerful bonding force in our lives. It can breathe joy into our day and every meal shared creates a small piece of community. By recognising the significance of food, both socially and nutritionally, Gerda Poalses has transformed eating well into resident wellbeing.

Gerda is someone who understands what contributes to a positive dynamic in dining. Through consultation with residents and their families she understands the cultural and social importance of good and nutritious food and the testimonials of visitors show that the catering is pleasant to both residents and their families. Gerda also maintains a presence during meal times to ensure that feedback is heard and she acts proactively if anyone shows signs of not enjoying the meal.

Gerda’s commitment to making the dining experience a social and positive one is demonstrated by how she seeks out feedback at meetings with not just the residents but also their families. Aside from group meetings, Gerda also frequently meets residents one on one incorporating feedback into meal planning.

Through her person-centric approach to care, Gerda Poalses shows a high level of genuine care. Her willingness to make changes and substitutions to meet different expectations and cultural preferences creates a positive dining experience and makes it feel like each meal is prepared with a secret ingredient of ‘love’.

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