Reporting Results

Policy and procedure — keep it simple

Many of you may be feeling overwhelmed at the thought of having to be ready to undertake what’s needed to achieve the Code of Conduct or ARVAS requirements.  

The best advice I can give is to have a plan, tackle the job one step at a time and document the way things need to be done.  

The POLICY should be the standards you set for your village.

The PROCEDURE will set out how you will achieve those standards.

Here are a few tips to help:

  • Identify the categories of operations within your village, eg. property, finance, human resources 
  • List for each category the policy, procedures, tasks and decisions associated with each category (Suggestion — check your last month’s calendar for tasks you do regularly as a starting point)
  • Use the Code of Conduct and Accreditation standards as tools to develop a Gap analysis (Suggestion — the ARVAS standards can be be downloaded as a great starting point without you being registered in ARVAS) 
  • Consult with your team
  • Consult with your residents’ committee
  • Prioritise what needs to be done  
  • Decide on a timeline and outline your weekly/monthly actions ​

And the best piece of advice — DON’T overthink it and DON’T be afraid to ask for help!


Reporting Results

Village Vibe —Sometimes a simple cuppa and smile is all it takes​

The residents from War Veterans Home Retirement Village Myrtle Bank, SA are making the most of their new on-site café.

Village Manager RSL Care SA, Terri Wood says, “The residents love the café, it’s a great place to people watch and chat all whilst enjoying a nice cup of tea.” 

Please send us in a photo and a few words highlighting what makes your village smile.


What the research tells us

Helping veterans with their specific needs – what can you do to help?​

With veterans’ needs highlighted at this week’s Royal Commission, I want to provide you with some resources that have helped me support veterans on their ageing journey.

If you, or a resident, is struggling with veteran-related issues there are organisations out there that can help.

The Anzac Centre’s clients are primarily veterans, but they can help family, friends and those supporting veterans, so don’t be afraid to contact them if you find yourself struggling with veteran issues.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is a great place to get practical advice on what veterans are entitled to.

In most states, the RSL office also has veteran advocates.

Peer support programs, like those run by Open Arms Veterans and Family Counselling, have been very useful, they can arrange for an advocate to visit your village and meet with residents and managers.

Veteran advocates have also been useful in providing information for village newsletters and on occasion as guest speakers.


Things to watch

The next VM professional development day isn’t far away​

The next workshop for the Village Manager Professional Development day will focus on some of the areas we’ve touched on in this newsletter. 

Guest speakers will provide information on dementia, elder abuse, Code of Conduct, ARVAS, accessing care, and much more.

We encourage Village Managers to take advantage of the next workshop in November, but remember, members have access 24/7 to tools in the online portal to help make your day-to-day tasks easier.

Contact Judy Martin here for more information.​

Things to watch

How are you coping with dementia issues in your community?​ Here is a great tool

Dementia cases in Australia are on the increase with 1 in 10 over 65-year-olds showing some signs of dementia – this will likely impact your village community. 

The DCM Institute is proud to support the Virtual Dementia Tour™ tool being championed by Churches of Christ in QLD.

The VDT™ helps raise awareness and educate staff to be more empathetic and compassionate when engaging, communicating and delivering care or services to people living with or supporting those living with dementia.

The VDT involves a 10-minute immersive experience, followed by a facilitated 30 minute debrief by a qualified certified trainer.

Churches of Christ has partnered with Leading Age Service Australia (LASA) in the national distribution of the Virtual Dementia Tour™ which is exclusively licenced to CofCQ.

If you would like to experience VDT or know more about the product please contact or call 1300 970 733.


Key things to help you everyday

Pluss Communities app — connecting the whole village​

The DCM Institute is passionate about adopting new technologies and is excited to partner with Pluss Communities and their new app.

It’s an organisor, calendar, newsletter and much more. 

The app allows residents to stay in touch with one another and the village team. Residents can access village news, reserve places at events, complete surveys and log operational requests all in the one-stop app’.

You don’t need to be a big village. 

Pluss Communities is offering DCM Institute members the chance to be involved in a working party to customise the app especially for smaller operators.  

Anyone interested in taking part in the project, which begins later this month, please contact me at

Check it out here.


Latest industry developments

The new Australian Retirement Village Accreditation scheme has been launched

ARVAS replaces the Lifemark and IRCAS accreditation programs. 

This new village accreditation scheme is co-owned by the Property Council of Australia and Leading Age Services Australia (LASA).

It will focus on the expectations of both existing and future residents who choose to live in your retirement villages across all states and territories.

ARVAS will offer more robust quality and operational processes that incorporate six traditional areas, and a new quality area of resident care.

The seven areas are:    

  • Community Management
  • Human Resource Management
  • Resident Entry and Exit
  • Resident Engagement and Feedback
  • Environment, Services and Facilities
  • Safety and Security
  • Resident Care (if applicable)

The new scheme is an extension to the existing Retirement Living Code of Conduct aimed at creating certainty and transparency for those living in retirement communities, including dispute resolution.

Your operator needs to decide to engage with ARVAS for your village.

Download the ARVAS standards here.

Here at the DCM Institute, we recognise the importance of the Retirement Living Code of Conduct and ARVAS.  We encourage Village professionals to start familiarising yourselves with these frameworks, encourage your operator to participate and begin planning.

And remember, the DCM Institute continues to provide support and tools to enable participants in the Village Manager Professional Development program to better understand and achieve quality standards and processes for their communities.