By Marie Sansom
MOST people grumble about their work, at least occasionally, but Jack Barker's job satisfaction is unassailable. Mr. Barker heads Tender Loving Cuisine (TLC) at Five Dock, a meal delivery service for seniors and people with disabilities.
"I get satisfaction from the gratitude I get from clients," Mr. Barker said. "So many of them can't get out of the house. They're often the forgotten people, but we give them good healthy meals and they see our couriers giving them a cheery smile."
Mr. Barker said he prides himself on choosing caring and compassionate staff who share his vision.
"We've got a beautiful team that are all committed and just love coming to work and helping others and that reflects when they're talking to their clients," he said. And he gets to eat his work too.
"I've lived on them for over four years," he said. "They're lovely - like a home cooked tasty meal, not like a factory produced one."
TLC employs a nutritionist so meals are low in fat and sodium and high in fibre. Most attract the National Heart Foundation's tick.
Mr. Barker set up the organisation after a close friend had a car accident resulting in brain damage. He helped out by making meals for his mate and family.
Medical staff treating his friend as an outpatient found out about this and thought other discharged patients would appreciate such a service, so the idea for TLC was born. After struggling to establish a reputation in the industry and getting out of debt, Mr. Barker now heads a financially sound and vital community service.
"I'll work until I stop pushing a pen," he said.
Copyright, INNER WEST WEEKLY