Veronica Da Conceicao, Sales and Leasing Manager of OPAL, has worked with seniors and families for 26 years. She joins Candy Ho, Director and Vice President of Element, and opens her heart to share with us what her work means to her. (Well, it’s a lot more than “work”!!!) She has deep passion and compassion, and it shines through her every word.

Segment 1, May 6th, 2017

 Segment 2, May 6th, 2017

Segment 3, May 6, 2017

Segment 4, May 6th, 2017

Here are a few written words from Veronica:

What is there not to love about working with Retirees?  Every day is different and full of jaw-dropping stories and experiences from residents and families.  

October 2017 will be my 27th year in the industry (Independent Living, Assisted Living, Licensed Long Term Care (intermediate & extended Care)).  I’ve also had the pleasure of managing different departments such as Resident Services, Housekeeping, Janitorial and Maintenance.  I also have experience in Administration, Food & Beverage and Nursing departments, Union Bargaining, Outbreak management and infection control.

I’ve always wanted to be a nurse or someone that could help others. The sudden passing of my beloved father at the young age of 52 pathed the pathway to my career.  At such an emotional time and needing to face reality I appreciated any help I can get without having to ask for it.  To be honest I didn’t know where to begin.  A friend of my parents reached out and helped us through the most difficult time.  I am grateful.   

To this day I feel blessed to have crossed paths with so many residents and their families.  Their stories of the World Wars, Holocaust and how they lived with no power or electricity and cooking on top of wood burning stoves or perhaps just an open fire like camping!  Residents have shared their hardships, family dynamics and celebrations with me.  They never hesitate to pull out their photo albums.  With  a sparkle in their eye and a big smile they proudly point out their children, grandchildren, travel, home and garden. There were many photos of Vancouver BC starting from year 1900.   Then there were more stories to tell and I would’ve loved to hear them but I had to continue with my day.  I am humbled by their stories and have shed a tear or two with residents.

Throughout my career I’ve always felt there was something lacking in this industry.  Not enough appropriate and safe senior housing.  Some residents are living at risk in their own homes with no family support.  Couples struggle to look after each other’s medical and physical challenges and become each other’s caregiver due to the fear of being separated. Eventually experiencing stressful, emotional and physical burn out.   Less time is spent with parents and family.  Seniors realize this and, therefore, don’t want to burden their children so they try to “manage”.     What if there was a place that can accommodate the constant changing of circumstances for retirees?  What if there’s a place that can accommodate how they want to live their lives?   Is there a place that doesn’t represent an “old folks” home?  To be honest, most don’t know what Retirement Living is because they can’t take away the perception of a “nursing home”.

I am so proud to be part of Element Lifestyle Retirement Inc.  After 26 years, I can finally say that the concept of intergenerational living with a continuum of care is the true definition of Retirement living at its best.

I invite you to come and learn more about Opal by Element.  I want to learn more about you and answer your personal questions.  Perhaps we can share stories too!

City Square – Upper Shops
#130 – 555 West 12th Avenue
Vancouver BC., V5Z 3X7