All About Care leads the way

Amy M 4 September 2014 3

Cara Hade, founder of Canberra-based home and community care agency All About Care, was pleasantly surprised to win the Business Woman of the Year Award at last month’s Canberra Women in Business Awards.

“I was under the impression that we were entered in the community participation award category. We thought we were going home empty-handed!” she jokes.

Just under four years ago, Cara was All About Care’s only employee. Today, the organisation employs over 60 people and delivers services to over 1000 clients across Canberra.

“When I started, I was the only employee, and I wasn’t able to pay myself for three months. In 12 months, I had 15 workers and we have continued to grow,” she says.

All About Care provides a range of services from personal care to social support and respite care. Cara, a former nurse, started the organisation three-and-a-half-years ago in a bid to transform community care for the better.

“I wanted to create a new model of care as I wanted to lead the way instead of waiting for it to happen. It’s still a work in progress, but we concentrate on tailoring care to each clients’ needs. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution,” she says.

Cara’s vision for All About Care is to help people to live independently in their own homes, regardless of age or disability. Supporting families is also a key focus.

“It’s a great feeling to watch individuals with sometimes severe disabilities learn to take control of their lives and develop new skills. It’s delightful to see the smiles on people’s faces when they are able to do something they haven’t been able to do for a long time, or to witness the relief on a husband’s face when they have a couple of hours respite from giving 24-hour care to a loved one,” she says.

“I don’t believe in limits. I believe in doing what it takes so that people can come together as a family. When you become a carer, it’s easy to lose your identity. We give families time to be families.”

Cara has big plans for All About Care, including creating a support system so that disabled people can complete the Duke of Edinburgh Award and helping young people with disabilities to move out of home and find work.

“My dream is to open a transition house for young people with disabilities. There’s a huge gap after finishing school as the current programs available are limited in the type of work available. I’d like to teach living skills and social skills so that they can learn how to be independent,” she says.

She is currently trialling a program in which people with severe disabilities are employed by All About Care and taught administrative skills including shredding, filing and printing emails.

“Once we’ve taught those skills, we’ll look for other employers who can offer them targeted jobs that are often forgotten about or put off, like filing. If it’s successful, we’ll do a fully-funded program,” she says.

She says All About Care’s success is thanks to its strong and dedicated team.

“All About Care only exists because it has fantastic committed staff who put in 110 per cent effort every day. The [Business Woman of the Year Award] belongs to them and to my beautiful children who never let me give up,” she says.

“At the end of the day, it’s the frontline support workers – the ones who don’t often get mentioned – who drive this industry. It’s easy enough to accept awards and market the business, but it’s really the support workers, families and the community who need attention and recognition.”

All About Care
To learn more about All About Care and how to find care for yourself, a relative or a friend, visit or call 6162 5155.

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3 Responses to All About Care leads the way
MBird MBird 11:33 am 03 Sep 14

I haven’t heard of All About Care before, but we are on the lookout for a new service provider for my aged parents, and AAC sounds pretty good.

We’ve had a few disasters with another agency that currently provides in-home care for my parents, with appalling communication from the call centre and a revolving door of staff who rarely seem to stick around for more than a few weeks. It’s time to look for a new provider who will answer their phone, return emails, turn up on time, and not leave my parents stranded for hours.

Looks like All About Care are local, smaller than the bigger national organisations, easy to contact, and quite engaged with the community. Have added them to the shortlist of providers to consider for my parents.

Antagonist Antagonist 6:38 pm 03 Sep 14

As a carer myself it is a subject that is close to my heart. The name Cara Hade is also familiar – and can’t help but wonder if her family is the same one that lived near the Lyneham shops in the 1980s. Well done, Cara.

As an aside, what relevance is the photo to this story? I don’t see the link between All About Care, a fire truck and a half-dozen school-aged children dressed as cheerleaders.

Ryanjohnstone Ryanjohnstone 11:45 pm 03 Sep 14

Hi ‘antagonist’
Having supported all about care quite a but recently, it comes as no surprise that they have used this photo. Cara, along with all of the ‘All about care’ team are very community orientated- always giving back to the community. The groups pictured reflect just a small fraction of all the communities in Canberra they support. Rather then choosing a photo of their logo or something else stock standard, they are instead showing their community spirit! Also if you direct your attention away from the young girls you will also notice quite a few of AAC’s clients and workers in the photo as well, who were all very excited to be involved.
Hope this clears up any confusion about the photo!

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